13 March 2006


5:51 am
Just about to walk up my driveway after a walk when I heard far above me the exhilarating sound that I identify as Spring! I looked up to see a flock of about 30 Common grackle (Quiscalus quiscula)! As I hoped, they all landed in the tops of the 2 White Spruce (Picea glauca) on the edge of my land! This is the earliest sighting I have on record in the past 10 years. I have two sightings as early as March 15 (1999 & 2000).

08 March 2006

The Inevitable

I woke up this morning, International Women’s Day, hearing the loud “wick wick wick wick wick” of a Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus).

[Colaptes auratus, by the way, means golden or gilded pecker! OK, OK. I went for the potty joke. Colaptes auratus does mean that, but “pecker” in the sense “to peck like a bird.” The “golden” originally referred only to the yellow-shafted flicker.]

Back to the original point, please.

Hearing the song of a Northern Flicker means that spring, that elusive, yet inevitable season we seem to all crave in late winter, is approaching. The Flicker was singing “Spring.” How do I know? Well, most birds aren’t singing at all in the winter. They have no need, no interest; they have no territories to proclaim, no mates to secure. You will hear birds vocalizing but not singing the “song.”

I’ve noticed Black-capped Chickadees (Poecile atricapilla) singing their Spring song for several weeks. They will occasssionlly do that on a gloriously warm and sunny winter day.

In 1995 I had a dream about Flickers and made a computer “painting” of that dream. Here, then, for your viewing pleasure...

This is my journal entry for 10/18/1995:

“I dreamed a huge 100+ flock of Yellow Shafted Flickers were in 3 clumps in the yard with 2 deer. At least one of the deer had young velvety antlers.”

07 March 2006

What a Sight!

Comet Pojmanski!

4:30 am. 14°. Dressed in my red, ankle length polar fleece robe, standing in my driveway with a birding scope set up and my binoculars strung around my neck, I finally spotted the lovely, pale green fuzzball hovering above a gorgeous, shining cresent Venus.

Check it out before it wings its way back beyond our Sun.

06 March 2006

Watching the stars last night?

I was out watching Jupiter, which of course, is not a star but a planet. It was lovely. I could also see Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto.

They were all dressed far more spectacularly than Jennifer Aniston, or the like...

Planet, from the Greek πλανήτης, planētēs, which means “wanderer.” And, no, I do not speak or write Greek. But I do Google.

02 March 2006


Artist’s Trading Cards are small, 2.5 x 3.5 inch, works of art that are made and, most importantly, freely traded.

I made this one, at work, in a few minutes. I used a discarded file folder for the stock, the floppy part of an old floppy disk, a part of a page from an outdated phone book, staples, paper clips and envelope sealer as glue.

It is, simply, Office

(There is a bit of scanner glare at the bottom of the floppy; it being shiny material.)

01 March 2006

Thumbnail Clear Sky Clock

This is begging to be turned into art.

I am currently working on creating more, and more easily accessed, storage for my art supplies. My friend ME, who lives in a lovely, old, farm house that she keeps easily neat as a pin because of the spareness with which she has decorated, is coming over a few times a month to assist in the process. I am about to order a small chest of drawers for the spot where a pine chest currently resides. I rarely access the contents of the box because it is a big pain in the patoot to get items in and out of it easily. Drawers are the answer. Easily opened drawers. We all know the frustration of sticky drawers! (Let it go potty-heads!)

The point of this is: as I create space that is easy to access in which to store my art supplies I will be more inclined to get them out (and put them away!). And then, I will be more inclined to create art as it moves me rather than watch the inclination move in like a storm and dissipate, leaving behind dissapointment like drought.

I'm listening to Mongo Santamaria "Streak O’ Clean" from: La Bamba