always quite grey and dark-- in the darkness one
sees the plum trees and magnolia trees shining--but
this year is colder, and the greyness is more tenacious,
the cloudy days longer.
Today, though, we have a sunny, spring-like day.
But it's strangely quiet. Usually all the birds gather
around the house, chirping from early in the morning
and eating the camellia buds and dropping some of
them to the ground. But this year, the bigger birds are
observed, but the smaller birds are few, including
sparrows. We haven't heard the uguisu, the Japanese
nightingale, or bush warbler. According to Wikipedia,
it starts chirping from the beginning of February
and usually gives news of spring...
Neither have we seen or heard the mejiro, the Japanese
Rachel Carson, marine biologist and author who
"loved all forms of wildlife and treasured the environment,"
once described (in her book Silent Spring, written while
she had cancer) the “chains of devastation” (referring to
the death of robins as a result of a program to spray elm trees
with pesticides) when we lose small animals and songbirds.
The book's title, inspired by Keats' ""The sedge is wither'd
from the lake, And no birds sing," pertains here in our
little town of Kamakura, where incoming spring seems
silent indeed. It's not the kind of situation one wants to
get used to.
|Rachel Carson (1907-1964)|