Note: To protect the privacy of our members, e-mail addresses have been removed from the archived messages. As a result, some links may be broken.
Mockingbirds are the true artists of the bird kingdom. Which is to say,
although they're born with a song of their own, an innate riff that happens
to be one of the most versatile of all ornithological expressions,
mockingbirds aren't content to merely play the hand that is dealt them. Like
all artists, they are out to rearrange reality. Innovative, willful, daring,
not bound by the rules to which others may blindly adhere, the mockingbird
collects snatches of birdsong from this tree and that field, appropriates
them, places them in new and unexpected contexts, recreates the world from
the world. For example, a mockingbird in South Carolina was heard to blend
the songs of thirty-two different kinds of birds into a ten-minute
performance, a virtuoso display that served no practical purpose, falling,
therefore, into the realm of pure art.