Quotes About Birds



Do you ne'er think what wondrous beings these?
Do you ne'er think who made them, and who taught
The dialect they speak, where melodies
Alone are the interpreters of thought?
Whose household words are songs in many keys,
Sweeter than instrument of man e'er caught!
_Tales of a Wayside Inn: The Poet's Tale_.

I shall not ask Jean Jaques Rousseau
If birds confabulate or no.
'T is clear that they were always able
To hold discourse--at least in fable.
_Pairing Time Anticipated_. W. COWPER.

The black-bird whistles from the thorny brake;
The mellow bullfinch answers from the grove:
Nor are the linnets, o'er the flowering furze
Poured out profusely, silent. Joined to these,
Innumerous songsters, in the freshening shade
Of new-sprung leaves, their modulations mix
Mellifluous. The jay, the rook, the daw,
And each harsh pipe, discordant heard alone,
Aid the full concert: while the stock-dove breathes
A melancholy murmur through the whole.
_The Seasons: Spring_. J. THOMSON.

Whither away, Bluebird,
Whither away?
The blast is chill, yet in the upper sky
Thou still canst find the color of thy wing,
The hue of May.
Warbler, why speed thy southern flight? ah, why,
Thou too, whose song first told us of the Spring?
Whither away?
_Flight of Birds_. E.C. STEDMAN.

The crack-brained bobolink courts his crazy mate,
Poised on a bulrush tipsy with his weight.
_Spring_. O.W. HOLMES.

One day in the bluest of summer weather,
Sketching under a whispering oak,
I heard five bobolinks laughing together,
Over some ornithological joke.
_Bird Language_. C.P. CRANCH.

Sing away, ay, sing away,
Merry little bird.
Always gayest of the gay,
Though a woodland roundelay
You ne'er sung nor heard;
Though your life from youth to age
Passes in a narrow cage.
_The Canary in his Cage_. D.M. MULOCK CRAIK.

The cook, that is the trumpet to the morn.
Doth with his lofty and shrill-sounding throat
A wake the god of day.
_Hamlet. Act_ i. _Sc_. 1. SHAKESPEARE.

Bird of the broad and sweeping wing,
Thy home is high in heaven,
Where wide the storms their banners fling.
And the tempest clouds are driven.
_To the Eagle_. J.G. PERCIVAL.

Where, the hawk,
High in the beetling cliff, his aery builds.
_The Seasons: Spring_. J. THOMSON.

And the, humming-bird that hung
Like a jewel up among
The tilted honeysuckle horns
They mesmerized and swung
In the palpitating air,
Drowsed with odors strange and rare,
And, with whispered laughter, slipped away
And left him hanging there.
_The South Wind and the Sun_. J.W. RILEY.

"Most musical, most melancholy" bird!
A melancholy bird! Oh! idle thought!
In nature there is nothing melancholy.
_The Nightingale_. S.T. COLERIDGE.

Then from the neighboring thicket the mocking-bird, wildest of singers,
Swinging aloft on a willow spray that hung o'er the water,
Shook from his little throat such floods of delirious music,
That the whole air and the woods and the waves seemed silent to listen.
_Evangeline, Pt. II_. H.W. LONGFELLOW.

Rise with the lark, and with the lark to bed.
_The Village Curate_. J. HURDIS.

The merry lark he soars on high,
No worldly thought o'ertakes him.
He sings aloud to the clear blue sky,
And the daylight that awakes him.

What bird so sings, yet so does wail?
O, 'tis the ravished nightingale--
Jug, jug, jug, jug--tereu--she cries,
And still her woes at midnight rise.
Brave prick-song! who is't now we hear?
None but the lark so shrill and clear,
Now at heaven's gate she claps her wings,
The morn not waking till she sings.
Hark, hark! but what a pretty note,
Poor Robin-redbreast tunes his throat;
Hark, how the jolly cuckoos sing
"Cuckoo!" to welcome in the spring.
_Alexander and Campaspe, Act v. Sc. 1_. JOHN LYLY.

O nightingale, that on yon bloomy spray
Warblest at eve, when all the woods are still;
Thou with fresh hope the lover's heart dost fill
While the jolly Hours lead on propitious May.
Thy liquid notes, that close the eye of day,

* * * * *

Portend success in love.
_To the Nightingale_. MILTON.

O honey-throated warbler of the grove!
That in the glooming woodland art so proud
Of answering thy sweet mates in soft or loud,
Thou dost not own a note we do not love.
_To the Nightingale_. C.T. TURNER.

Lend me your song, ye Nightingales! O, pour
The mazy-running soul of melody
Into my varied verse.
_The Seasons: Spring_. J. THOMSON.

The crow doth sing as sweetly as the lark
When neither is attended; and I think
The nightingale, if she should sing by day,
When every goose is cackling, would be thought
No better a musician than the wren.
How many things by season seasoned are
To their right praise and true perfection.
_Merchant of Venice, Act v. Sc. 1_. SHAKESPEARE.

A falcon, towering in her pride of place,
Was by a mousing owl hawked at and killed.
_Macbeth, Act_ ii. _Sc_. 4. SHAKESPEARE.

Call for the robin-redbreast and the wren,
Since o'er shady groves they hover,
And with leaves and flowers do cover
The friendless bodies of unburied men.
_The White Devil, Act_ v. _Sc. 2_. J. WEBSTER.

Now when the primrose makes a splendid show,
And lilies face the March-winds in full blow,
And humbler growths as moved with one desire
Put on, to welcome spring, their best attire,
Poor Robin is yet flowerless; but how gay
With his red stalks upon this sunny day!
_Poor Robin_. W. WORDSWORTH.

The swallow twitters about the eaves;
Blithely she sings, and sweet and clear;
Around her climb the woodbine leaves
In a golden atmosphere.
_The Swallow_ C. THAXTER.

The stately-sailing swan
Gives out his snowy plumage to the gale;
And, arching proud his neck, with oary feet
Rears forward fierce, and guards his osier isle,
Protective of his young.
_The Seasons: Spring_. J. THOMSON.


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