Saturday, April 9, 2011

Of haiku and bald eagles

If not for the cat,
and the scarcity of cheese,
I could be content.

That’s one of 17 haiku in a charming book for children – and obviously, for adults too.

Children “3 and up” might like the images (paintings by Ted Rand), though I wonder about their “getting” words like “raucously” and “burgle” and “dominion” and “gelatinously.” Maybe worldly 3-year olds could figure out some words from their (brief!) context. (haiku by Jack Prelutsky)

As for the haiku, what a great way, and time, to at least introduce the word and the concept to kids -- a poem, a short kind of poem invented by the Japanese, a poem about animals, a poem that doesn’t rhyme . . . and so on.

I spend all my time
Picking ants up with my tongue.
It’s a busy life.

One of the haiku is about bald eagles. Which reminds me of two eagle cams recently in the news.

One is at The second is at (excellent picture quality, plus sound, plus infrared at night, reports Karen Linder, a viewer in Kingston)

She also suggests handling a video cam this way: “I keep mine on in the background with the sound low and visit it periodically. When I start hearing a lot of peeping, I take a look, as it may be dinner time. A loud noise might indicate the other bird is landing.”

On to big-bird watching!

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