In search of story

June 4.21: Coping


Bassoonist in the pond,

tireless serenade,

accompanies the hours

from dawn through midnight shade.

In sunshine, gruff continuo

beneath the madrigal

of chirp and honk and buzz

in summer’s concert hall.

By moonlight, Shostakovich

in solo lullaby,

sandpaper to the ear,

yet weighty to the eye.

The fish in slow ballet,

the heron straight and still

attune themselves to tuneless

amphibian leaden trill.

Redundant though its song,

endless though it seems,

its hopeful constancy

all monotony redeems.


As you may recall, dear reader, frog song used to keep me awake,

and now it seems like an old comforter.



15 thoughts on “June 4.21: Coping

  1. Amazing what our ears can get use to. Frogs are interesting and at least they don’t leave crusty shells for you to sweep up. 🙂 Hope this Friday finds you well. I wonder if you ever look back and think of how appropriate using the word ‘coping’ was when you started. 🙂

    • Absolutely true: our ears can get used to many things. Not EVERY thing, however. I was surprised last winter at how much I missed the frog song. As to coping, indeed I think about that a lot. Matter of fact, I was thinking it was time to write about it. As far as I’m concerned, I’m still coping. Or trying to. I think you’re coping too. Or trying to. This isn’t over.

      I do appreciate that the frogs don’t leave crusty shells for me to sweep up. They’re a lot cleaner than geese, too!

  2. Love this piece and how you delineate nature’s orchestra. I feel like anything can become music, and the more we listen to it, it’s more familiar to us. There’s also the repetition of such sound, and it’s how we hear it that makes the most impact. Beautifully, beautifully said.

    • Thank you! There is truth to what you say: some combinations of sounds can become musical to us. The goose honk eludes me as music, but it kind of enters into the whole of it as maybe something percussive. (Or just cussive!)

  3. Quite the symphony. It’s amazing how it goes from annoying to expected to missed if not there.

  4. I imagine being able to look out at the pond and its critters must have been comforting during the past months of confinement.

  5. Yes, it was, actually. Not quite the same as looking out on the Pacific, but pacific in its own way. I do love the ducks!

  6. Anura berceuse rooted …woot woot! wonderful

  7. I’ll go with ‘Hopeful constancy’ – we cannot turn our nose up at that, especially not at the moment. I imagine the frogs are happy with their promotion to official comforters, but not happy enough to vary their tune. Some of our birds are remarkably monotonous. I had not seemed to have noticed that before lockdown.

    • Indeed. You are so right that the lockdown gave us new and quite unwanted awareness of monotony. And, yes, I hold to hopeful constancy and try to think that if the frog can be that relentlessly hopeful — as I think he is — I should try to be too. I’m not as good as he is, but then who could be?

  8. Thank you! I needed that!

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