Returning to a blog post series I began twelve months ago, I’m posting a bird photo, along with a corresponding poem from this lovely book The British Museum Birds. Each poem in the anthology is matched with a gorgeous illustration from the British Museums vast collection of artworks. Today I’ve chosen a poem by W. H. Davies entitled Magpies.
I have an orchard near my house
Where poppies spread and corn has grown ;
It is a holy place for weeds,
Where seeds stay on and flower, till blown.
Into this orchard, wild and quiet,
The magpie comes, the owl and rook:
To see one magpie is not well,
But seeing two brings all good luck.
If magpies think the same , and say,
‘Two humans bring good luck, not one’ –
How they must cheer us, love, together,
And tremble when I come alone!
W. H. DAVIES ( 1871 -1940).
Are you one of those crazy people ( like me) that always greets solitary magpies? I don’t think I’m a superstitious person, but I still find myself calling ‘ Hello Mr Magpie’ when I see one perched alone, cackling at me from a tree.
It is amusing to think that the magpies cackle may be a greeting to a solitary human too.
Are you superstitious about magpies?