Green Jays Stage

December 6, 2019.  We returned to our haunts near Rio Grande City the week of Thanksgiving.  One very good birding location is Salineno World Birding Center located on the Rio Grande River and thus in danger.  The current expectation is a wide caliche roadway between river and birding, nothing to spoil the birding center so long as the birds aren’t repulsed by construction.  (But there are those insisting we need a continuous WALL …)  If anywhere near Salineno in the November-March months, this place is worth the search.  (The birds go elsewhere to breed summer/fall.)

I’ve been thinning and tweaking photos since we got back, looking for a green jay image that captures their playful energy.  Today, I encountered a poetry form that so fits the experience of watching green jays – birds flapping around noisily, people holding still quietly.  I don’t think I’ve seen a puente poem before, and this is certainly the first one I’ve written.  Thanks go to Ken Gierke @ https://rivrvlogr.com/2019/12/06/finding-direction-puente/ for stirring my creativity.  The puente form puts two perspectives together with a single common thread, and I knew immediately which photos to collage together to show the two “sides” of Salineno: birds on the far side of a large Mesquite growing laterally; birders a few yards away on the entrance side.

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A Ramadara

November 28, 2016.  We escaped just before Thanksgiving to the Rio Grande Valley, to look for green jays – a bird that doesn’t come much further north than that southern tip of Texas. We’d never seen one!  Binoculars and cameras in tow, off we went.  We stayed at Rancho Lomitas (http://www.rancholomitas.com/) – a native plant nursery with RV spots tucked here and there.  Thanks to a long-term RV resident who feeds the birds, green jays were ever-present if not exactly sitting still for portraits.

On a tour of the nursery, I learned a new word – ramadara – that immediately began tickling the poetic lobes of my brain.   This image is a collage of three separate jay photos which gives a sense of the thorn scrub they inhabit and their gregarious nature.

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