The Contrast: The Parrot and the Wren
By William Wordsworth
Within her gilded cage confined,
I saw a dazzling Belle,
A Parrot of that famous kind
Whose name is Non-pareil.
Like beads of glossy jet her eyes;
And, smoothed by Nature's skill,
With pearl or gleaming agate vies
Her finely-curved bill.
Her plumy mantle's living hues
In mass opposed to mass,
Outshine the splendour that imbues
The robes of pictured glass.
And, sooth to say, an apter Mate
Did never tempt the choice
Of feathered Thing most delicate
In figure and in voice.
But, exiled from Australian bowers,
And singleness her lot,
She trills her song with tutored powers,
Or mocks each casual note.
No more of pity for regrets
With which she may have striven!
Now but in wantonness she frets,
Or spite, if cause be given;
Arch, volatile, a sportive bird
By social glee inspired;
Ambitious to be seen or heard,
And pleased to be admired!
This moss-lined shed, green, soft, and dry,
Harbours a self-contented Wren,
Not shunning man's abode, though shy,
Almost as thought itself, of human ken.
Strange places, coverts unendeared,
She never tried; the very nest
In which this Child of Spring was reared,
Is warmed, thro' winter, by her feathery breast.
To the bleak winds she sometimes gives
A slender unexpected strain;
Proof that the hermitess still lives,
Though she appear not, and be sought in vain.
Say, Dora! tell me, by yon placid moon,
If called to choose between the favoured pair,
Which would you be,--the bird of the saloon
By lady-fingers tended with nice care,
Caressed, applauded, upon dainties fed,
Or Nature's Darkling of this mossy shed?
Comcast is being uncooperative about letting me stay online consistently so I will be very brief. We had a quiet Saturday morning reading and watching the squirrels on the deck annoy the cats. Then we drove Adam to work at Glen Echo Park since his bike chain is broken, went to pick up a self-cleaning litterbox that someone was freecycling (in a house with a yard that had two bunnies munching the grass), and came home to get Daniel.
From there we went to Poolesville to the Kunzang Palyul Choling Temple's Garuda Aviary, a sanctuary for abandoned and abused parrots, some of whom have outlived their owners (the birds can live to be 80) and some of whom were horribly mistreated by people who either didn't know how to take care of them or couldn't take their loud noises and occasional biting. The aviary was having a fundraising gala with live music and vegetarian food.
We had veggie shawarma for dinner, after which I was going to put on Amadeus because I had Mozart's 40th symphony stuck in my head. But I was overridden by family members who wanted a comedy, so instead I subjected them to Kate and Leopold which I recently found really cheaply on Blu-Ray. The consensus is that the script is silly but Hugh Jackman is dressed really well (at least, the member of the family who cares about that thinks so).