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Psalm Three
By Mahmoud Darwish
Translated by Ben Bennani


On the day when my words
were earth...
I was a friend to stalks of wheat.

On the day when my words
were wrath
I was a friend to chains.

On the day when my words
were stones
I was a friend to streams.

On the day when my words
were a rebellion
I was a friend to earthquakes.

On the day when my words
were bitter apples
I was a friend to the optimist.

But when my words became
honey...
flies covered my lips!

--------

Yeah, officially sick of pollen season...quite literally, though the trees do look lovely. I've had a headache for three days now and I know it has nothing to do with what I'm eating, how much exercise I'm getting, etc. Had another quiet day with laundry, looking up deck and fence regulations for the neighborhood (which included a long walk around the back path looking at numerous decks and fences), covering Trek comics news and taking younger son to violin.

In the evening we went to the elementary school book fair -- probably my last elementary school book fair! -- where I bought a collection of poetry I had previously not heard of, This Same Sky, a collection of poems in translation about the human condition edited by Naomi Shihab Nye, though younger son did not want any books since he just got the latest Erin Hunter book (the book fair was several volumes behind). There was a picture book for very young children of the tortoise that adopted a hippo, even though they no longer share an enclosure (here is the blog about them and how they worried that as Owen grew, he would become a threat to Mzee).


A pair of peafowl show off their plumage at Cardiff Castle...


...and a pair of egrets do the same at the Bristol Zoo.


A cockatiel at Birdland in Bourton-on-the-Water shows off its feathers...


...though soon enough, it becomes shy and retreats into its barrel.


The pigeons in front of the National Gallery are happy to land on people's hands to accept food.


But the canaries in the aviary at the Glenthurston Holiday Apartments in Catford prefer to keep their distance.


A sight common to both sides of the Atlantic: a gull picking at creatures caught in the seaweed.


The first time we went to England, the European magpies we saw driving from Heathrow were my clearest confirmation that we were on a different continent from home. This one enjoys the gardens at Hampton Court Palace.


In other animal news, I read that George Lucas and Mark Hamill are doing a Star Wars parody for Adult Swim, Robot Chicken: Star Wars, this proving that Lucas has learned nothing about poultry since Howard the Duck. And the Smithsonian is going to charge for admission to its butterfly pavilion, the first time it has ever charged for admission to a permanent attraction, which sucks. But Spinal Tap is reuniting to fight global warming, which rocks in several ways, and Mexico City is legalizing abortion right as our own Supreme Court is chipping away at Roe v. Wade. And on my local news, when they were covering the new Earth-like planet discovered 50 light years away, the science reporter said it would take hundreds of thousands of years to reach it, and the anchor responded, "That's only if Kirk and Scotty don't get the impulse engines fixed."

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