By Michael Waters
Such jazzy arrhythmia,
the white storks'
Plosive and gorgeous leave-takings suggest
Oracular utterance where the blurred
Danube disperses its silts.
Billed, red-legged creatures begin to spiral,
To float among thermals like the souls, wrote
Pythagoras, praising the expansive
Grandeur of black-tipped wings, of dead poets.
Most Eastern cultures would not allow them
To be struck, not with slung stone or arrow
Or, later, lead bullet—
birds who have learned,
While living, to keep their songs to themselves,
Who return to nests used for centuries,
Nests built on rooftops, haystacks, telegraph
Poles, on wooden wagon wheels placed on cold
Chimneys by peasants who hoped to draw down
Upon plague-struck villages such winged luck.
If the body in its failure remains
A nest, if the soul chooses to return…
Yet not one stork has been born in Britain
Since 1416, the last nest renounced
When Julian of Norwich, anchoress,
Having exhausted all revelations,
Took earthly dispensation, that final
Stork assuring, even while vanishing,
"Sin is behovely, but all shall be well."
We had thought about going downtown late Saturday morning, but both apaulled and younger son have colds and there were snow and wind advisories for the afternoon, so we reluctantly decided to skip the chocolate festival at the National Museum of the American Indian and stay closer to home. Younger son went to a friend's house and the rest of us were going to take a walk in a Gaithersburg park, but it started snowing before we got there, so we made quick stops in Bath & Body Works (which was having a tote bag and hand cream giveaway) and Target (where we needed various things) before heading back home. We had talked about going to see The Artist but given the weather and everyone's health, we decided to put that off, so we picked up Green Lantern on Blu-Ray to watch in the evening.
Younger son had plans to go to his school's Sadie Hawkins dance, so we took him and his girlfriend to California Pizza Kitchen beforehand, then her parents shuttled them from the restaurant to the school and we picked them up afterward. We did watch Green Lantern in the evening, which I enjoyed more than I thought I might given my general disinterest in superhero movies -- I think I liked it for exactly the reasons it didn't get great reviews, that it isn't nonstop frenetic action and lots of violence (and the girl actually gets to do stuff). Plus it has Geoffrey Rush and Mark Strong as aliens. Here are a couple of photos of the snow and one of son and his date dressed up for the dance: