I can lose myself
in the woods.
The smells, the sights, the sounds.
The smell of the forest is something I'd like to bottle and enjoy in dry Colorado!
The details of the forest overwhelm me and delight me. It's hard to take it all in --
I'm obsessed with trying to "name that tune."
This is a Red-Eyed Vireo on a nest just
outside my window.
It's song is a lovely constant in the
I can lose myself in the woods.
On a walk in early June, a tiny warbler caught my eye and my ear. Black, yellow, and white with a Grammy award-winning song, the Black-Throated Green Warbler made a diehard fan of me. I first saw the brightly colored male. He posed on a branch and took my breath away.** The female was nearby and soon flitted into view. She had grass in her beak and when she stopped in a crook of a birch tree, I realized she was making a nest. A magical moment!
In the next few weeks I returned to the spot often. I saw the nest form into a perfect cup, a receptacle for the female to lay her eggs. I saw her sit..., and sit..., and sit. Unmoving, patient, keeping the nest warm and protected with her own body and soft, lovely feathers.
One day she was absent from the nest. I saw her return with something in her beak. A chick had hatched and a tiny pink beak opened wide to receive a tasty morsel from the mother.
A few days later I watched both parents hunt and return to the nest to nourish their growing chick. Then . . .
Last night we experienced yet another violent thunderstorm and a deluge of rain. Over an inch fell in just a few minutes. Would the little warbler family survive? I wondered.
My question was answered today as I studied the place of the nest. It had been destroyed by the storm.
Nest remnants hung sadly from the branch.
My heart stopped as my mind raced through possible scenarios. Neither parent was to be seen or heard. Ravaged as the nest was, the one chick that had been held safely in the cup of the tiny nest and who had so eagerly accepted food from its parent, was not there.
I ventured into the woods to look under the tree,
hoping to find a chick to rescue or a chick to grieve. But, none was to be found.
A tiny Black-Throated Green Warbler was lost in the woods last night.
What do I make of this twist of the story?
I can lose, and find, myself in the woods.
**Adult male photo from https://images.search.yahoo.com/yhs/search?p=black+throated+green+warbler
All other photos ©2017 Nancy Buschart