Thursday, 25 August 2011

The Chopin Bird

Since my childhood I have always loved birds and bird-song.
Both my parents were bird lovers and we often had discussions/arguments about which was the most beautiful.

Nearly always someone would choose the thrush, my father always the blackbird and I always caused amusement for choosing the robin.

"But, it has such a sad song", my mother used to say, and, "typical", one of my brothers would say.  "Trust you to go for the melancholy one"

There is an element of truth in this, in that i have a melancholy streak which colours my attitude to most things, but the lovely downward spiralling plaintive song of this solitary bird strikes an echo in my heart, which no other song can equal.

The song changes at a particular time of year, and for me, this is the first indication that Summer is over, a harbinger of Autumn.

This morning, in the unwelcome midst of household chores, I sat briefly with the window of the 'office' open. watching the rain and listening to  the heart-rending sadness of the first Autumn robin song this year.

If the Blackbird is Mozart, the thrush Haydn, then the Robin is definitely Chopin.


  1. Thank you MP. Sometimes the words write themselves.
    Not often, I have to say.

  2. What would the goldfinches (they are never alone in my garden) be?

    I saw a Sparrowhawk sitting on a tall hedge looking at the roadside today, as I drove across the Wolds-definitely Wagner.

  3. I don't know Margaret. Since I am basing it on song and I've never knowingly heard goldfinch song it would have to be a guess. Perhaps something chirpy - Rossini - maybe.
    Can Sparrowhawks sing? I rather doubt it. Perhaps whoever wrote the music for "Psycho" would fit the bill no pun intended.

  4. I'm not an expert on bird song - I need to sit still and listen and watch more. You certainly inspire me to learn more.

  5. Truly, one of life's great pleasures Freda, and what's more, it's free!

  6. A really lovely post, Ray. Thank you. I wish I had your ear for birdsong. I'm surrounded by them and can only recognise the blackbird....

  7. I'm glad you enjoyed it Perpetua.
    Bird-song is just a matter of practise like most things.
    If you have robins in the garden and you are in the house, just open a window (without frightening the bird away) and listen.
    They sing more readily than almost any other bird and you'll soon recognise the song.