Charles E. Burchfield in his own words Share Tweet

 
Charles E. Burchfield (1893-1967), Wild Geese and Poplars, 1956; watercolor on paper, 39 x 26 1/2 inches; Private Collection

Charles E. Burchfield (1893-1967), Wild Geese and Poplars, 1956; watercolor on paper, 39 x 26 1/2 inches; Private Collection

Charles Burchfield, Journals, September 28, 1914

Monday, September 28, 2020

Awake at 6:00.

Look out of window eastward. Half of horizon is brilliant yellow; trees blackish; heavy frost. Roofs, & grass, white. Crystal air.

Just as the sun struck the tip-top foliage of some trees southward, up out of the south came a murmurous noise, sounding like grease spattering in a thousand skillets, going louder and louder, till – wonderful! a million blackbirds!  each & every throat pouring down a hundred chirppings (sic). They were a splendid sight, as they thrummed overhead in swift rollicking flight.  Two flocks there were, - the morning was now indelibly stamped on my memory.

Cries and calls of robins on all sides; chattering of sparrows.  It was a perfect frosty March morning.

To Work: Sky a clear frosty blue; the sun striking the frost-roughened roofs, turned them to blinding glass. 

Air spoke-hazed eastward.

Noon - sky a most wonderful pure blue.  Coolth on the air.

October - thinned poplar trees, looking like great veiny worm-eaten leaves, blue smoke streaming thru (sic) their whitish green branches, leaf-rustled ground; cool air; yellow sunset - blackbird dotted.  A swallow or two - still.

Dandelions at their height.

I am not observing nature very closely; my mind is occupied with thoughts of finances & returning to school. My ideas for “pictures” come from within.  Such an instance was tonight while I was discussing ways & means.  All at once a scene came before my mind.  It was a winter woods at night, thru which I could see the dark sky which was studded with great bright blue stars. The blue stars were the most notable thing of the appari­tion.

There seems to be no insect sounds these last few nights.

Listening closely, I can hear an occasional pin-point creaking, and again a frog-like stronger call.

Air subtly cool.  Smell of decayed leaves.

Charles E. Burchfield,  September 28, 1914

 

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