poetry and prose about place

songs in the grey woods – ovenbird

with 2 comments

He can be a bit monotonous. A bit of a scold. He reminds me of a rusty hinge. He says teacher-teacher-teacher, repeating his song through the woodland. He is the Ovenbird.


His scientific name is Seiurus aurocapilla. Seiurus (which I remember as ‘serious’) is from the Greek meaning ‘tail shake’, a reference to the characteristic upward flip of his tail. The name aurocapilla means golden-haired referring to his crest of orangy feathers. The Ovenbird is olive-brown, with a streaked white breast. He has a white ring around his eye, a white throat and a dark line below his cheek. He looks a bit like a thrush, but is a large warbler.


His serious nature and his call of ‘teacher, teacher, teacher’ make me think I’ll include a poem about his ways in my project about one room school houses in New Brunswick. This is how my poems usually begin, with a whisper from nature.


May 20, 2016 'Ovenbird sings teacher, teacher, teacher' Jane Tims


Copyright 2016  Jane Tims 

Written by jane tims

May 23, 2016 at 7:00 am

2 Responses

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  1. Love the oven birds. I’ve seen them in the undergrowth in Fundy National Park. Shady little characters! Thank you for the etymology of their name: so helpful.

    Liked by 1 person


    May 23, 2016 at 9:47 am

    • They love to scuffle in the leaves. It’s one thing I like about birds, their behaviours are so different from one-another.


      jane tims

      May 23, 2016 at 9:50 am

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