The Shores of the Great Silence

It is a busy morning here. A robin continued its clear singing long past first light, the adult grackles have demanding little mouths to feed out there on the lawn, and the hummingbirds are warming up from their sleep. It is too easy to allow such affairs to become part of the background music — and noise — of our lives. Attention must be paid to these matters.

Which may be why we are behind here. We’re late with week’s installment of our Sherlock Holmes bee mystery and with the second part of our exploration of bird photography. Worse, we’re leaving town for two days for an uncomputerized, undisclosed location to rest the “beehives” which Antonio Machado mentions in this little poem. We’ll be back Wednesday.

Is my soul asleep?

Is my soul asleep?
Have those beehives that work
in the night stopped? And the water-
wheel of thought, is it
going around now, cups
empty, carrying only shadows?

No, my soul is not asleep.
It is awake, wide awake.
It neither sleeps nor dreams, but watches,
its eyes wide open
far-off things, and listens
at the shores of the great silence.


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