Sounds Like Summer

This morning, an audio visit to Goose Creek.

The occasion: robin and tanager calling alternately–until I fetched the mic.

So here’s a clip of American Robin, Scarlet Tanager, and Wren (Carolina I think) mixing it up,  with the burble of Goose Creek in the background.

I will make my own mix tape of bird and nature noises for my iPhone as an ambient nap-aide.

Got Plans

The the best-laid ones, well, you know. They don’t always follow the script.

I had plans for another post topic this morning (yes a rare-these-days premeditated bit) but was overcome by events. Again.

And in the process of doing the first thing so that the second could happen, I found one of not many audio files I’ve recorded over the past dozen years. So I thought what the heck, turn on your speakers, hold your nose, and click to play…

…to “I’ve Got Plans”–an old favorite by the Red Clay Ramblers. 




Call of the Raven

…and it is not “nevermore” but so much more. They have quite a lot to say.

[su_box title=”Got Ravens?” style=”soft” box_color=”#e8d3a9″ title_color=”#235529″]QUESTION: Are you hearing ravens where you live? I’m especially interested to know about other places in Floyd County where these birds may be year-round residences. [/su_box]

Their call is the distant throaty croaking you will hear several times, beginning about 10 seconds in.

We’ve had these impressive and intelligent members of the crow family living in our valley all along. But I am pretty sure we have not had the level of activity we are seeing this year.

And in the past few weeks, the soaring in pairs and the vocalizations have really increased–from dawn to dusk. I’ve set myself the task of finding a nest, which is likely on a rock ledge up the gorge.

I will likely have more to say about the ravens of Goose Creek later on, but for now, listen to this brief recording (over creek sounds and indigo bunting song) of back and forth raven calls. You can hear at least two distinct individual voices by their different pitches.

The raven image was taken on Buffalo Mountain a few years ago. I’ll have to retell that account of ravens at play–unforgettable!

For Your Health: Take a Walk

IMG_3329Double670I find myself, once again, staring out the window by my desk, my eyes falling more often than not on the “New Road” that rises out of the pasture just past the barn.

We (and especially SHE) follow that path countless times in a week (and SHE in a single day) as a form of meditation, release and habit born of the pleasure it gives us to live IN and not just on this land.

And as fate would have it, I came across an essay I recorded in 2011. I don’t remember why I would have made a 5 minute essay, since the limit for NPR radio essays at WVTF was no more than three and a half.

The topic is not a surprise, however. The notion of the relationship between our health and the ways we relate (or fail to relate) to nature is a significant part of what I read and think about. And in this one case at least, speak about.

The image shows my first and second wife, walking more or less together, down the New Road, into mystery.

Kids, Classrooms and Creativity: It IS Possible

In our Chilrdren's Hands
Image by fred1st via Flickr

It isn’t easy in these days of SOLs to stimulate the creative energies of school children. But it does happen. This essay, broadcast at WVTF in April 2010, describes three opportunities I had in 2009 to see school kids encouraged and supported by their teachers to operate outside rote learning mode and for reasons other than to pass standardized tests. Musical excerpts Mike Mitchell Music.


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