Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Finch's nest


 Finch's nest, never used, blown down one stormy night.


Made with blue lichen, moss, twigs and thistledown,


stitched with bright baler twine, an arc of one horse hair,


and tiny feathers from the hens (or even the white peacock), lined


with kapok from an old quilt thrown away inside the shed,


given as treasure, and brought to show me in a plastic box.


19 comments:

marja-leena said...

A most wonderful treasure! How lucky you are to receive it.

herhimnbryn said...

Such a treasure. Just look at all that work. All those 'wing' miles, toand fro, to and fro.

Rouchswalwe said...

Oh, such a cozy conglomeration. As it is, I feel as though I have gained wings. Beautiful handiwork!

the polish chick said...

oh lucy, that is so beautiful! thank you for sharing!

Anne said...

What a delicately lovely creation! What incredible photographs!

JMartin said...

Can you keep and display this miracle in a lucite box (perhaps after freezing or other mite treatment)? The house finch version in this book is chaotic in comparison, incorporating inter alia bandaids. http://www.amazon.com/Nests-Fifty-Birds-that-Built/dp/0811877582/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1321411691&sr=1-1

Barrett Bonden said...

It's 06.55 am and in five minutes I'm off to catch the bus that will take me to the train that will take me to the bus that will take me to the BR. Just thought I'd drop in before I left. Finch's nest? Ah, more about women's hairstyling. But no.

Lucy said...

Thank you.

The nest came from the home of a friend of my sisters in Devon, who keeps all manner of creatures including a white peacock I believe. He found the nest blown down after a storm, and gave it to my sister when she was visiting, because he knows she loved beautiful craftsmanship. She was very touched by this because he is not given to giving away his treasures! She put it in a plastic food box and brought it here for me to photograph.

I didn't do so immediately and put it to ones side, but even after some time stored in the box it had no bad smell and there was no sign of any visible mites or other bugs, it seemed utterly pristine.

I'm not quite sure what finch it is, I assume it is a finch by the look of it, I think it's too large for a goldfinch (who sometimes weave blue forget-me-not flowers into their nests), perhaps a chaffinch.

I've now returned it to my sister and it's in her illuminated vitrine-type dresser with other objects of beauty!

JM - lovely to see you. I covert that book...

Lucy said...

sorry, I mean 'covet'.

Clive Hicks-Jenkins said...

Extraordinary. The bird does what a bird does, driven by what's embedded in its DNA and compels it to build.

Someone recognises the craftsmanship and beauty of the fallen nest, thinks to pass it on to another who in turn carries it safely to you.

Photographs. More craftsmanship in images and words. The nest, such a fragile survivor, whizzes out to an electronic world where others are arrested by the unlikeliness of its survival, the tenderness, the sheer, ravishing beauty of endeavour. The bird, if it's still alive, knows nothing of what has passed.

This is what art should be. Made without fuss, built without expectation of acclaim, un-trumpeted by the maker but recognised by those who bother to look.

This is why I don't sign paintings, in the hope that one day when my name has been forgotten, someone might approach one unencumbered by information, to look and wonder on what brought about the act of creation. DNA. Desire. Compulsion.

Jean said...

So beautiful. And so well photographed, I can almost touch it. Thank you for sharing this.

Dave King said...

Where ever you look in nature there are beauties to behold. It matters not where or what. It would seem to me that our brains must be programmed to respond to them as beautiful, but I do wonder why...

earlybird said...

Absoutely beautiful.

Fire Bird said...

this feels so intimate

JMartin said...

Were I Clive, I'd sedulously work my name, initials and SSN into every painting detail like Hirschfeld's annoying Ninas. Were I Lucy, I'd claim possession of nest as retribution for childhood grievances. Ah the varying hues of our souls.

Lucy, surely your goodness should garner book as early Christmas gift.

Lucy said...

Thanks all, what lovely comments!

Rosie said...

I hope the owner managed to build another...

Lucy said...

Hi Rosie, yes I worried a bit about that, but probably better if it was in a precarious place that it was blown down early in the season when they would perhaps have time to make another, than when they had eggs or chicks to lose in it with the investment of time and energy that would have taken... I hope it worked out for them anyway!

JMartin said...

Yes, yes, you've moved on to galls and so forth, but must share this added temptation. Now, all we need is hi-def video of nest-building, in real time. http://www.amazon.com/Avian-Architecture-Birds-Design-Engineer/dp/069114849X/ref=lh_ni_t