Today’s assignment: Write about the three most important songs in your life — what do they mean to you?
My favorite songs are performed live for me daily. There are many and they all are important.
The Song of the Quail
In spring the quail descend the hill outside the window in front of my desk. At first singly, then in pairs, and finally in a flock followed by tiny balls of fluff. Quail cannot be quiet. I open my window slowly so I can hear them. Their calls permeate the silence as they travel down the hill and along the drive as they search for seed and scratch among the leaves. They may chatter softly or call loudly to one another. One or two males carefully hang back, ever on alert and ready to send out a danger signal. The slightest foreign movement can send the whole troop into a noisy flying frenzy with little heed for what they might be flying into. The raucous song of the quail is a sure sign of spring.
The Song of the Owl
The song of the owl is a hoot. Two hoots per owl to be precise for our Great-Horned owls. It happens rarely and at night during mating season. Somewhere outside our window a single owl gives a mellow resonant two hoots. A minute or two later it is matched by a responding pair of hoots of a slightly different pitch from some distance. The duet continues for a while. Then on silent wings the pair selects another site to rendezvous.
The Song of the Coyote
In summer with the windows wide open at night, sleep comes second to listening to the distant howl of the coyote. Coyotes do not sing every night, but when they do, it is a song worth listening to. Sometimes they sing a solo, other times a duet, and occasionally a chorus. The chorus is not always a happy one. It may be accompanied by the screams of a deer. It is part of the fabric of our mountain. Sometimes peaceful and quiet, sometimes cruel and demanding, but always my favorite place.