Billy Collins recently gave a reading at the Nashville Public Library. Access the program, with several of his popular poems, here:
Barking Legs Theater has moved their regular shows online, including “Wednesday Jazz Online,” and “The Floor is Yours,” a virtual open mic. Access the programs here:
The Tivoli Theater is now presenting a virtual cinema. Information on available films here:
I have been taking a class for birdwatchers from the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology. Courses range from beginning to advanced. If a whole class seems like a big commitment, just check out their live Bird Cams
The Chattery offers online workshops, including Birdwatching from your couch porch with Laura Marsh.
The Chattanooga Zoo offers some online programs via their Facebook page.
The Chattanooga Public Library is offering programs through their YouTube channel
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8wQB1amgvxPX5JWJtywRQg and on their
The Tennessee Aquarium has numerous programs online, including three webcams where you can watch the animals, Penguins, and Otters and Sharks, Oh my! The Tennessee Aquarium at Home page also includes educational videos, a link to view IMAX films, and, my favorite, Mr. Bills Blog.
Send your announcements to znaturalist (at) gmail.com
“Ozymandias” A poem for all seasons
Politicians on both sides seem to be more interested in empire building than in serving the electorate. This was also true in the days when Percy Bysshe Shelly wrote the poem Ozymandius. He posits a traveler who discovered an ancient statue, gone but for the stumps of legs and the pedestal. Nearby, the head lay on the sand. The inscription was still legible. Here are the last five lines of the poem.
My name is Ozymandius, King of Kings;
Look on my Works, ye mighty and Despair!
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
From Ozymandius – Percy Bysshe Shelly
Poet Paul Richmond teamed up with some musicians to create a statement about the current situation.
Fred Johnston presented the “Poem of the Day” in the Irish publication RTE
I originally encountered these works on the Facebook page of the Ashville Poetry Review.
Response to “The Revenant” by Billy Collins
I found this poem serious and amusing in the way it presents the Human/Dog relationship from the dog’s perspective. It became one of my favorites on my first reading. Though Collins presents the dog’s opinion as not caring for humans at all, I have known dogs who gave demonstrative love to many humans, including me.
In these days of Pandemic Panic, with its accompanying isolation and fear of contagion, I wish I had a dog. On walks through my neighborhood, I sometimes see my neighbor’s dog, an animal which has come under my care when the neighbor went out of town. He seems to remember this, and when I visit, he comes to me, sits beside me, and leans against my shin.
I have been told that he seems to think he is my dog, recognizing the sound of my car and running to the door to watch it pass. Lately, when I take walks down the street, my neighbor mysteriously knows, and leaves the dog out on his lead. He comes to its full length, just short of the road, and we visit for a while before I proceed with bird watching or photographing roadside flowers.
I have come to a new appreciation of Collins, an esteemed Poet Laureate, and his appreciation of dogs. He has written several poems about them. Hear Collins read this poem and another, “A Dog on his Master.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DOvbl3ZPPV4