Poem of the Week: Two Old Crows

By Vachel Lindsay

Two old crows sat on a fence rail.
Two old crows sat on a fence rail,
Thinking of effect and cause,
Of weeds and flowers,
And nature’s laws.
One of them muttered, one of them stuttered,
One of them stuttered, one of them muttered.
Each of them thought far more than he uttered.
One crow asked the other crow a riddle.
One crow asked the other crow a riddle:
The muttering crow
Asked the stuttering crow,
“Why does a bee have a sword to his fiddle?
Why does a bee have a sword to his fiddle?”
“Bee-cause,” said the other crow,
B B B B B B B B B B B B B B B B-cause.”

Just then a bee flew close to their rail:—
“Buzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz             zzzzzzzzz             zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz ZZZZZZZZ.”
And those two black crows
Turned pale,
And away those crows did sail.
B B B B B B B B B B B B B B B-cause.
B B…

Continue reading →

Field Journal: Renton Crow Roost

It was only the second day of my 365 Nature Project when we tracked down the crow roost in Renton, nearly one year ago. For years, since we moved into our house in south Seattle, I had watched the crows fly south in a giant stream every night in the autumn and winter months and I wanted to know where they went. On Day 2 of 365 Nature I found out – they descended on a parking lot in an industrial area of Renton, just south of Seattle and near the local Ikea store. It was a thrilling experience with thousands of crows everywhere and starling murmurations adding to the spectacle. For one reason or another I neglected to return the rest of the season and once this autumn rolled around again I put a visit on my list of places to visit.

On Thursday this week I…

Continue reading →

365 Nature Project – Day 2

In 2016 I’m doing a 365 Nature project. Each day of the year I will post something here about nature. It may be any format, a photo, video, audio, sketch or entry from my nature journal. It could be a written piece. Each day I will connect to nature in some way and share it here by the end of that day. You can keep up-to-date by subscribing to the RSS feed or be notified by email. See all the 365 Nature posts.


Today was very exciting.

For a few weeks my husband has reported seeing Starling murmurations from his office in Kent, just to the south of Seattle. Also recently, there been several reports of murmurations of Starlings seen at Ikea in Renton, between Kent and Seattle. I desperately wanted to see this for myself so this afternoon we made the drive south to Kent and arrived just…

Continue reading →

Nature Picture Books:: As The Crow Flies

All day long you’re on the go, you don’t have time to watch a crow…

So begins one of my favorite picture books, As the Crow Flies, by Sheila Keenan and illustrated by Kevin Duggan. Crows are one of my favorite birds, they are fascinating and beautiful to watch. We are lucky to have a couple of sizable crow roosts here in the Seattle area. We’ve been to watch them roost a couple of times and our house is right along one of their nightly roost routes. Needless to say, I was thrilled when we chanced upon this book at our local library. After renewing it the maximum number of times, I had to purchase it because we loved reading it so much.

This book perfectly captures not only the wonderful, and amazing variety of crow behavior, but our own attitudes to them as well. Crows are undoubtedly…

Continue reading →

The Experience of 10,000 Crows

Every night from fall to spring, upwards of 10,000 crows fly from downtown Seattle and other surrounding areas to the University of Washington’s Bothell campus, located on the far north end of Lake Washington. They are here for their nightly roost, where all 10,000 of them, cawing and making a ruckus impossible to miss, gather together before descending into the wetland trees. There are several other crow roosts around the Puget Sound area, but none as large or magnificent as the Bothell roost.

Along with the University of Washington, Cascade Community College shares this campus and hosted a crow evening this past fall which included Audubon representatives on hand with bird information, crow hats for the kids, cider for all and a talk by crow expert Kaeli Swift.

I confess I’m a bit crow mad, as long-time readers may have gathered from past posts, Emerald City…

Continue reading →