Today was my first day back on the water, this year. The cherry blossoms were like frosting on the Cooper River here in Camden. I went with an amazing and inspiring man named Jim Cummings who runs the UrbanTrekkers program in Camden. He takes Camden youth to pristine places all over the continent, and in the past two years he also started building boats with them in the Maritime Museum in Waterfront South (my neighborhood). It was like a dream again to be on the water, the sky overcast yet glowing like dawn all day.
There was an abundance of birds, and the carp were jumping out of the water as spawning season was just beginning. The fishermen wait, and have begun hearing stories, there was a 30 something inch striper caught last week in the Cooper.
Here are some of the highlights from the birding today:
Many of these birds have found their homes along the waterways. The raptors have come back to occupy the abandoned places, in this urban ecosystem they are the queen. Huge old factories, towers, smoke stacks, making home in waiting and still places. Soaring through cathedrals , scooping up church mice, the prayful cantor of the silent glide.
during the season of lent i always think of the vultures. vultures finding life in death, yet not killing .
The waterways remember the wisdom of the city before it was paved, they tell the story of the life of the people and places, and they tell us the wisdom to reconnect with the source.
i look forward to a season on the water, a season with the youth of camden in the boats they made, a season of stepping into the reflections.
If you don't know where you are, you don't know who you are. ~ Wendell Berry