Thursday, February 24, 2011

Geese Got It

On Presidents' Day, we went south in search of Snow Geese. And there they were. An enormous flock of geese from Siberia who've wintered on this Washington farmland as long as anyone can remember. We were riveted. So many geese. Amazing flight patterns. A shift on the left rippling as thousands of birds changed direction. Hypnotic. Made me think of writing. Not writing about geese. I was thinking about words. As if each of those geese were one word. A massive flock of birds, of words, making a novel. How sometimes the words are in sync, electric in the air. Sometimes the flock is at rest, and five geese, five words, shoot up and you wait for the mass to follow and they don't and you think those five renegades are doing the wrong thing until you realize that their slight variation is actually the best. And then the entire flock ups and double-backs. I could have watched the geese for hours.

I celebrate each and every one of those geese as I celebrate all of our words. The words that go together and the words that stick out. The words that rise up from the field and fill the universe with black and white electricity.

Writers... how cool to watch the flock. How cool to create.

For all of us, may this be a week of creation.

(another photo from Lee Mann, amazing photographer of the Pacific Northwest)

20 comments:

  1. Oh, wow! That is a whole lotta geese!
    May we all create a whole lotta words this week! :)

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  2. What's good for the goose is good for the gander. Hopefully the words will flock to me, too.

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  3. Cool analogy, Robert!
    I've seen huge flocks of snow geese in the Arctic. Now I'm gonna remember them in a different way!

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  4. beautiful and scary at the same time - birds kinda freak me out sometimes :)

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  5. Fantastic anaolgy. There are blackbirds in the area where I used to live and the way they all fly around together, in perfect sync, mesmerised me on more than one occasion.

    Jai

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  6. Excellent photo from Lee Mann. Birds and words...brings to mind Anne Lamott's book on writing, one of my favorites, Bird by Bird.

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  7. What a great photo, and such a perfect way to compare it to writing. Amazing.

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  8. I love the geese and the comparison.

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  9. Cool post! I like your analogy.

    Have a great weekend! :)

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  10. Thanks for the comments, everyone. Especially thanks for the reminder of Annie Lamont's BIRD BY BIRD, one of the first books on writing I read. I love Annie's casual irreverence.

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  11. That must be a breathtaking experience. One of these days I'm going to see the crane migration in Nebraska.

    And inspiring post!

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  12. whoa, that's a lot of geese! Cool photo

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  13. Wow.. that is an amazing photo, and great analogy :)

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  14. Amazing photo and analogy! I am soaring right now, so this resonated.

    Of course, I wouldn't want to walk barefoot through that field after the geese had flown away ;)

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  15. I'd love to sit some (ex-)presidents under that flock, if you get my drift

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  16. Wow. Great post. I'm struck by the imagery and off to write some words. May they have some of this feel!

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  17. This is lovely. I moved to coastal northern California a few years ago and one of the area's big treats is the thousands of Aleutian geese that forage in the cow pastures and fly over on their migrations. Their "honking" is mesmerizing.

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  18. That picture is amazing. I'm so glad that you went in search!!

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  19. wow ... they're so MANY!! Wo-OW!

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  20. Very beeeutiful...can't help wondering about the poo, though...and also hope there aren't any airplanes nearby. :)

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