Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Mourning Dove Family III (Part 3)

As My World Turns

                                             Thursday, May 31, 2012
                                             An overnight shower freshened the green;
                                             the lacy feathery leaves of the honey locust tree
                                             almost sparkle 'gainst the blueness of sky;
                                             and the birds sing happiness, flitting through branches.

                                             On a telephone pole sits a big black crow;
                                             he caws and caws, then swoops to the ground
                                             to arrogantly strut to a nearby bush...
                                             as a squirrel scampers by with a nut in his mouth.

                                             My Albert, he's crouched so snugly on the nest;
                                             his grayish-tan body camouflaged with the twigs;
                                             the breeze blows his feathers and my baskets of flowers.
                                             In late afternoon, we'll feel the warm sun.

                                             Two ladies pass by on the pathway below;
                                             they chat with a patio friend;
                                             she offers them coffee...then dons her sneakers
                                             to join them for their exercise walk

                                             The forecast last night was for plenty of rain;
                                             awakening this morning, I hear “splashes” from cars;
                                             the low gray clouds emit numerous drops
                                             that hang like jewels from my balcony rail.

                                             A very special friend, I've invited for lunch
                                             bringing flowers of daisies, carnations, stephanotis.
                                             She yearns to see my Victoria and Albert;
                                             in awe...she beauteous “my Queen”
                                             who serenely and regally sits upon nest.

                                             Roasted chicken breast...and “romaine” with fruits,
                                             raspberry vinaigrette delicious;
                                             enjoyed chilled Pelee Pink in twisted-stem glasses
                                             while my Mourning Dove observed, without blink of eye.

                                             Friday, June 1
                                             The constant rain splatters on the busy street
                                             and droplets, like a necklace, lace the balcony rail.
                                             Poor Albert, huddled on white-shell-eggs
                                             has sparkles of water upon his tawny feathers.

                                             Monday, June 4
                                             The sun is pushed behind darkened clouds.
                                             Thunder rumbles...and continues to rumble.
                                             Then a lightning streak forced me inside...
                                              grabbing seat cushions, my stitchery and tea.

                                              My doves diligently, loyally remain
                                              to protect their precious white eggs.
                                              Come thunder, come lightning, come wind and rain,
                                              they'll not desert their unborn babes.

                                              Friday, June 9
                                              This may be the day when one squab's born.
                                              I long to observe this “dovey event”!
                                              Will it be like Rosie and Papa (2010)
                                              when she opened an egg with her very skilled beak?

                                              Saturday, June 9
                                              (I'm interested in the Queen's Celebration)
                                              The Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth
                                              is celebrated in England with Brits who adore her.
                                              An editor...from the Hamilton Spec
                                              penned his comments  about her reign.
                                              He praised her character as key to success
                                              which accredited to me of her personality.
                                              Over the past few days, I wrote a blog entry;
                                              on Open Office,I typed my thoughts
                                              then sent it to Documents to later post.
                                              It failed to appear in this Document list ~
                                              called my son to “rescue it for me”!

                                               The air is chill...and clouds undecided.
                                               Just before noon, I hear Victoria and Albert.
                                               They hesitate together...and I am wondering,
                                                “Are they messaging me about news of a birth?”

                                               Rescuing my coffee of French Vanilla;
                                               grabbing a sweater and “Spring Time” to stitch,
                                               I retreat to the balcony...for my front row seat.
                                              Only sign of Albert!
                                               She sits very high (I know there's a babe).
                                               Anxious and trembling, she pulsates her throat.
                                               (must be preparing to feed one squab.
                                               She bends her neck to reach the wee one.
                                               “Alice”  wriggles, so restless, so tiny.
                                               “Pigeon Milk” Mama thrusts into babe's open mouth.

                                              At 6 pm, “Twitter, Twitters”...must be a “shift change”.
                                              Albert is standing at nest...a view I do have
                                              of one full egg and of newborn's half-shell
                                              and there is Alice beside “her shell”...nestled!

                                             Sunday, June 10...9 am
                                             A Garden of Eden, this morning feels
                                             (as I would imagine the Biblical scene).
                                             No Euphrates or tempting apple tree;
                                             instead ~ a heavenly green, leafy environment.

                                             The clarity of sky and light wispy clouds ~
                                             not a whispering breeze ~ just serenity of the 'hood.
                                             Birds trill their lilts and passive joggers go by.
                                             Best of all ~ my Mourning Dove family
                                             who trusts me implicitly ~ just eight feet away.
                                             Albert is a-nest with Alice beneath him;
                                             when the second egg hatches, I've a name to call him.

                                             With white-tipped tail beautifully spread,
                                              Victoria “twitters in” and gracefully lands
                                              on the railing behind and stands just a moment.
                                              Albert, so still ~ 'til she stands beside him
                                              as though conversing their plans for the day.
                                              Wee Alice wriggles forth ~ Victoria feeds her.
                                              With light pecks on his back, this message Albert gets!
                                               He steps from the nest ~ legs, feet pinkish red;
                                               glances me...then flies into yonder blue sky.
                                               (Victoria's position...blocked view of the nest).

                                                Mama stretches her neck to reach below breast
                                                inviting Alice to come forward to feed.
                                                Voraciously feeds her (who seems to have grown)
                                                Victoria's restless ...half-standing on nest
                                                 to protect her babes...or is it babe plus egg?

                                                In early afternoon, came Hamilton friends
                                                to visit the doves who call my place “home”.
                                                They are truly amazed...the doves don't object
                                                with humans so close who are no threat!

                                                 A dozen salmon roses, they brought to me
                                                 which I placed in a tall crystal vase.
                                                We balcony-entertained with hot herbal tea
                                                 of blueberry/pomegranate ~ butterfly china;
                                                 the coffee-cream-cake...was so delicious
                                                 as we watched dear Victoria's motherly care.
                                                 We chatted about friends, jobs and birds ~
                                                 unknown yet whether the second one's hatched.

                                                 Monday, June 11
                                                 (My doves have their secret...untold to me).
                                                 With telephone calls, also e-mails,.                                                    
                                                 one hour I have to spend with Albert,
                                                 adding more stitches to “Spring Tree Fairy”.
                                                 Albert...suddenly sits high on the nest
                                                 and a wee one appears, whom he does not feed.
                                                 Time to leave...lunch with my son at the RBG.
                                                  Returning at three, I admire Victoria
                                                  for her sleekness and colours of tawny-gray,
                                                  her fine tapered tail and black-speckled wings,
                                                  her long slim neck and pearly gray head.
                                                  What a gorgeous bird ~ the epitome of dove-hood.
                                                  She' in full sun...her throat is pulsing...
                                                  yesterday it occurred...”panting” in the heat!

                                                 Noises in the neighbourhood, ignored by my doves:
                                                 ear-splitting buzz saws trimming trees and shrubs;
                                                 a man from below scrapes the rough black pavement
                                                 with his shovel, distributing it to reseed the grass;
                                                 a school bus stops with parents full of chatter
                                                 as joyous children exit and anxious to be home;
                                                 a Harley Davidson bike rumbles down the street;
                                                 whirling blades of a helicopter soar through the sky;
                                                 my telephone on the table rings with a message.
                                                 “Victoria, I assume, you are immune to noise
                                                 and urban activities mean you no harm.
                                                 You've a very private balcony, unattached to others;
                                                 a chorus of birds singing...morning and afternoon;
                                                 you've leafy trees and  high utility wires;
                                                 a black-wrought-iron chair ~ your.”nesting throne".

                                                 When the noises had ceased, Albert arrived
                                                  to observe his Victoria from a telephone wire.
                                                  He waited, waited and waited many minutes...
                                                  (perhaps he's wary, I'm sitting at the table;
                                                  to end his trepidation, I move further back).
                                                  Five minutes later, he swoops down with twitters
                                                  to the corner railing behind the family nest.
                                                  There he waits...a sleek and slender body...
                                                  like a handsome prince, he awaits his queen.
                                                  She's aware he is there and makes preparation.
                                                  She steps outside the nest and waits about a minute.
                                                  Then turning to face the balcony rail,
                                                  she broadens her tail with white-tipped feathers
                                                  and leaps into flight and into the trees.

                                                   Albert, still quite tentative...waits.
                                                   I look!  There are TWO SQUABS!
                                                   I'm most reluctant to photo them.
                                                   In a minute, he leaps down to the nest
                                                   ...tenderly steps into it, ever so cautious.
                                                   A wee babe comes forward, whom he feeds.
                                                   Into a feathery puff ball, he hunches over them.
                                                   He must be partly standing...and this pic I photo.
                                                   Eddie has arrived ~ today or yesterday!

 Alice and Edward were two of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert's
 nine children. It's almost unimaginable that in about two weeks,
these fledglings rapidly grow, developing wings to flutter ~
then fly away with begin their adult dove-hood!

Next in this 4-part series...Progression to Flight.

Merle Baird-Kerr . . . written June 12, 2012
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  1. Dear Merle,

    Your "Hamilton Friends" were so happy to attend your well hosted Garden Balcony Party with tea and cake. To be so close to nature with Victoria's little family was certainly our pleasure,always to be remembered.
    Thankyou for your special friendship !

    Sherrie & Alan

  2. Ever devoted Friends, you both are.
    It was my pleasure to share such a special experience with you. This has been the 3rd family to call my location "HOME".
    So this pleasure...has been mine!