Vol. 2, No. 3 – The Captive’s Escape

Bird in Cage ©WikiC

Bird in Cage ©WikiC


I saw such a sorrowful sight, my dears,
Such a sad and sorrowful sight,
As I lingered under the swaying vines,
In the silvery morning light.
The skies were so blue and the day was so fair
With beautiful things untold,
You would think no sad and sorrowful thing
Could enter its heart of gold.

A fairy-like cage was hanging there,
So gay with turret and dome.
You’d be sure a birdie would gladly make
Such a beautiful place its home.
But a wee little yellow-bird sadly chirped
As it fluttered to and fro;
I know it was longing with all its heart
To its wild-wood home to go.

I heard a whir of swift-rushing wings,
And an answering gladsome note;
As close to its nestlings’ prison bars,
I saw the poor mother bird float.
I saw her flutter and strive in vain
To open the prison door.
Then sadly cling with drooping wing
As if all her hopes were o’er.

But ere I could reach the prison house
And let its sweet captive free,
She was gone like a yellow flash of light,
To her home in a distant tree.
“Poor birdie,” I thought, “you shall surely go,
When mamma comes back again;”
For it hurt me so that so small a thing
Should suffer so much of pain.

And back in a moment she came again
And close to her darling’s side
With a bitter-sweet drop of honey dew,
Which she dropped in its mouth so wide.
Then away, with a strange wild mournful note
Of sorrow, which seemed to say
“Goodbye, my darling, my birdie dear,
Goodbye for many a day.”

A quick wild flutter of tiny wings,
A faint low chirp of pain,
A throb of the little aching heart
And birdie was free again.
Oh sorrowful anguished mother-heart,
’Twas all that she could do,
She had set it free from a captive’s life
In the only way she knew.

Poor little birdie! it never will fly
On tiny and tireless wing.
Through the pearly blue of the summer sky,
Or sing the sweet songs of spring.
And I think, little dears, if you had seen
The same sad sorrowful sight,
You never would cage a free wild bird
To suffer a captive’s plight.
—Mary Morrison.

Red-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus cafer) at Zoo Miami by Lee

Red-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus cafer) at Zoo Miami by Lee

Lee’s Addition:

As a cage is full of birds, so are their houses full of deceit and treachery; therefore they have become great and grown rich, (Jeremiah 5:27 AMP)

It is always sad to see the birds in a cage. Yes, I enjoy seeing birds from foreign lands and also birds that are endangered at the Zoos. Most Zoos have Aviaries which let the birds fly around more freely, but even they “cage” them at times. We were just at the Zoo this past week and they added some new Cockatoos. Unfortunately, they are in cages, large cages, but still cages. One of the few times I have really felt sorry for them. It makes it hard to photograph through those wire also.

Zoo Miami’s Wings of Asia was one of the nicest Aviaries I have been to so far. They have around 54,ooo square feet of space to fly around in and it is very well landscaped. Made me feel like I was outside actually “birdwatching.” You had to really search for many of the birds, not just look in a cage. We go to Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa and they have a several nice sized aviaries for the birds to fly around in and not feel so “couped up.”

This just happened to be the one of the next articles we have been covering in the Birds Illustrated by Color Photography.


Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited

The above article is an article in the monthly serial for September 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.

To see the whole series of – Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited


(Information from Wikipedia and other internet sources)

Next Article – The White-Breasted Nuthatch

The Previous Article – How The Birds Secured Their Rights

Wordless – Hummingbirds


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