Feather Tracts: Selected Erasures from “A Laboratory and Field Manual of Ornithology” by Olin Sewall Pettingill, Jr., 1967
After Nesting Season
The intensity of evening—
the behavior of snow,
47 days of awakening.
There is an area of overlap
in which one may find stunted tundra,
intermingled blue blending—
showing bare bodies inundated
with widely spaced streams.
Bill somewhat swollen,
Bill not swollen—
Twice as long as the longest swallows.
The mouth is a cavity
a backward-projecting palate
divided to the floor,
occupied by a few small glands.
No teeth are to be found.
In rare instances,
young are placed on the shelves of cliffs,
near the ends of slender branches,
in the vicinity of bees and wasps
(the exposed parts of snake skins).
Sometimes they burrow, often in the fall.
No subject has been so little investigated
as that of cool night temperatures,
that cupped singing known
(in some cases) to be continuous
during early hours of the morning,