poetry and prose about place

sharing the grey woods

with 4 comments


a poor photo of a ruffed grouse in one of the trees behind our house


We share our grey woods with so many plants and animals. Sadly, our interactions do not always benefit the wild life.

The big panes of glass in our picture windows have brought disaster to so many birds.  If the sun shines just right, the glass is like a mirror.  When a bird sees the reflection of trees and sky, it must think it is flying deeper into the woods.   I find keeping the window curtains closed removes the mirror illusion and prevents some collisions.

Sometimes, we will hear a thump and by the time we investigate, the bird will have recovered.  Sometimes the bird is not so lucky.





alive in morning birdsong  thud thud thudding in my ears

slow as a pulse then faster  final beats too quick to count

a spruce grouse in the thicket  on a mound of leaves

drumming for a mate


all day

I thought of him

and smiled


buried in evening   birdsong   a thud on the window

the partridge sighing in the grass

tail narrowed   feathers ruffled at his neck  oddly bent

fingers on his throat

faint flutter

blood from his beak


I smoothed him into a mound of dead leaves

inspected the window

a feather stuck to the glass

moved as though nostrils drew faint breath


nothing broken



Copyright  2014  Jane Tims

Written by jane tims

November 14, 2014 at 7:02 am

4 Responses

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  1. Great picture. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a grouse out in nature.



    November 14, 2014 at 2:32 pm

    • Hi. We hear them all the time, but they are hard to see. The photo is blown up and is quite grainy. Jane


      jane tims

      November 14, 2014 at 9:43 pm

  2. The ruffled grouse is beautiful. So is your poem. It always saddens me when a bird hits one of our big windows and is injured or killed.



    November 14, 2014 at 10:45 am

    • Hi. Out at our camp, we hung bamboo curtains on the outside of the windows to minimize the accidents. Not so practical at our home. Jane


      jane tims

      November 14, 2014 at 9:42 pm

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