What If I did everything right and missed this blessed chance to have our eyes meet!
I made it into the park in good time to witness Lola waking up on one tree and Palemale on another. On a crisp promising morning like this it would be unworthy of me to ask more of the Earth. The Sun gently rose to be greeted by the cherry voices of small birds from near and far. And yet they all seem to come from one place--those cherry voices. I could not tell when they had started and I cannot now remember the last one heard--when did they stop their cherry singing? I wonder now in the stillness of the night and in my quiet room. I feel I can still hear them singing, they must have never stopped.
It must be the sound the Sun makes--for only the Sun I feel can have such a cherry voice that can linger in the soul like those voices do.
With such singing and in company so splendid; the Sun, the hawks and the cherry voiced birds, you cannot denounce me for not wanting to ever leave it all and trod off to some other place that can never warm the soul like this. But I must go away and leave this happy place and count the tiresome hours until I can return.
Presently I will stay and forget about where else I have to go and what else I have to do. I will pluck moments of this happy scene like wild, ripe berries on a laden bush and savor them for as long as they stay sweet on my tongue, and in my heart.
These sweet moments may be short, but they can be enduring.
Palemale photographed in the Ramble, Central Park early morning on Thursday December 4, 2008.
Thanks for all the letters about the photos in National Geographic Magazine, December 2008. Please note that the copies of the magazine which are sent to subscribers is quite different than those on the newsstands. The subscription issue contains four pages of photographs but the newsstand version only has one page.