About Blog Title...

As a child, it was one of my greatest delights to visit my grandparents in the spring when the whip-poor-wills began to call. Grandma and Grandpa lived in a remote valley of the Ozark Mountains where there were trees a plenty, and, seemingly, a whip-poor-will, or two, in each one.
My grandmother insisted that a whip-poor-will's call was not "whip-poor-will," but instead, "chip-butter-white-oak." I would listen really hard trying to hear it exactly as she said it was, but all I could hear was "whip-poor-will, whip-poor-will,..." But, I never let on to her.
I remember my grandpa watching and listening, with an amused look on his face, to one of these listening sessions. Shortly after that he began to call me, just for fun, "Chip Butter." It is a name I am proud to wear for I still love to hear that long, lonesome call on a warm summer's eve. And, sometimes, when I listen really, really hard, it seems I can hear quite clearly, "chip-butter-white-oak, chip-butter-white-oak..."


Friday, July 11, 2014

Weaving...




It was on the ground underneath the big tree - a birds' nest built of dead twigs, shaped into a cup, lined with grasses, rootlets, leaves, and....ribbon.  At first I didn't see the ribbon, for I was intent on admiring the weaving, over and under of twigs and grasses.  Weaving was something I had been thinking a lot about - thinking about it because of Jude Hill's class on "Considering Weave."





The nest was built, with all probability, by the Mockingbirds, which seemed this spring to have taken up residence in the big tree, underneath which the nest was found.  That one silky piece of ribbon woven into the nest among the twigs and grasses was such a surprise and amused me greatly.  What sweet little bird had woven it there?  A mother-to-be, perhaps, who wanted to make the dry, brown nest pretty for her new little ones?  Or, a father-to-be, who wanted to make the twiggy nest a bit sturdier when the strong winds blew?

I tugged on the ribbon, just slightly, thinking it might be used in the piece I was weaving for Jude's class, but soon realized it was woven tightly into the base of the nest.  To have removed it would have destroyed the nest, which I did not want to do. However, I did take inspiration from these little weavers, the birds who work only with beak and claw, and wove into the little piece I was working on a bit of old silky ribbon...






11 comments:

  1. They are inspiring, aren't they? I like to leave my thread clippings in an old net onion bag hanging on the fence out back...sometimes I run across an abandoned nest that has them woven in. Love your small weaving--the colors are just you!

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    1. What a great idea for all those thread clippings. I had just been thinking about putting out a few strands of this and that for the birds. We have found several old nests lined with Nell's hair. She has plenty to spare.

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  2. I love your weaving. Sweet story about he ribbon. Sometimes the simplest things bring us joy.

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    1. I do think the greatest joys are in the simple things. We have so enjoyed the songs of the mockingbirds this spring.

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  3. We have found two empty nest on our little shed outside. My husband took one down. It is so amazing how much work goes into the nest building. And by just a little bird. I like how yours inspired you to do some weaving of your own.

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    1. They are amazing little works of art; like intricately woven baskets, really. I keep hoping I will find a hummingbirds' nest; imagine how small they are. At one time there was a law forbidding the keeping of birds' nests, so I don't.

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  4. How sweet!! And how do you plan to use your woven piece?

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    1. As Jude says, "Just going..." I guess that is what I am doing...learning and going. This little sampler is small, 6" x 4 1/2". There will be more as I work through the lessons. They could be joined together or put into a book of cloth. So much to do... and I am caught up in the creation of Y and Z.

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  5. Your woven piece looks wonderful! It's great to get inspiration from nature!

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  6. I love that little nest especially with that little bit of ribbon woven into it. Birds truly are one of nature's artist. I collect the nests that have fallen out of the trees. Thanks for sharing both the nest and and your sweet little weaving .

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  7. A work of art.
    Imagine the work that went into this small nest.
    Love your woven piece. Wish I could sit still long enough
    to do handwork :)

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