Things Unknown but Longed For Still

I don’t think after living in South Africa that I could ever keep a caged bird. They are so incredibly happy flying in the trees, and fluttering back and forth to the feeder, and eating together as a large, social unit.

Lately, love birds are my most abundant visitors.

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Mixed love birds at the feeder, along with a camera-shy Crested Barbet on the wall behind.

I understand why they are incredibly popular pets. I am giddy as a child each time these colorful and vibrant birds come to my feeder. They’re curious, intelligent and playful. They watch me eagerly as I fill the feeders, even doing fly-bys in hurried anticipation that I will leave the seed and go. And sure enough, by the time I’m back in my office, they are covering the feeders, those large, circled eyes casting suspicious stares at me as they peck at the food. They are also skittish, flying away if I move too quickly, or stare too long.

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Love birds on our feeder in Tshwane/Pretoria, South Africa

There are more varieties than I believe are naturally within this range, but due to the mild winters and warm summers, many escaped pet birds can survive and find mates here. Silver Lakes has a thriving population of lovebirds.

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“things unknown but longed for still” – my favorite words from Maya Angelou’s poem

The title of today’s post are my favorite two lines from Maya Angelou’s poem, “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.” It remains one of my favorite modern poems, and I hope you’ll take a minute to read it, both for the beauty of the words, and the depth of freedom it represents.

Happy Tuesday in Tshwane, readers.

Love, Marla

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Flying in for a refill

10 thoughts on “Things Unknown but Longed For Still

  1. I haven’t read that poem in years. “A caged bird stands on the grave of dreams, his shadow shouts on a nightmare scream.” That’s pretty somber.

    1. It really is a somber line. She’s brilliant with her imagery. With everything, actually. It’s no wonder she achieved the legendary status she did. And she was such a giver. I love when a poet is brilliant and also such a humanitarian.

  2. I also love that poem! And those are some wonderful pics! Birds in general are amazing creatures!!

  3. Our birds aren’t quite so spectacular. But they’re beautiful and fascinating in their own way. Understated, I guess you’d call it.

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