Banded by God

Flying HIgh

Flying High

In my past occupation, I worked as a scientist, and took much joy in patterns and numbers.  Other scientists work with the natural world.  And in an interesting collaboration, there is a blog on art and science coming together with faith and creating beautiful works, called Biologos.  I have a link at the end of this post.

As a person of faith, I understand science as examining that which God created.  Science does not have to be the opposite of faith.

I read this poem on the Biologos Blog in May.  It stayed with me for days, thinking about our banding birds and what it would mean if God banded us.  What would that mean?  When have you been caught in the nets of God?  And what has that meant for you?


by Suzanne Underwood Rhodes

The nets of God hang in every wild place
to catch the unwary migrant,
one with the skull still soft, the journey barely started,
another to fall from the sky on the ten thousandth mile,

but when he holds one of those small terrified
bodies like a jewel between his thumb and forefinger
and unfans the wing to measure it, secretly admiring
the bars he conceived to catch his own hungry eye,
and the little claw foot he rings with a coded band
that numbers the feathers and weds him forever
to the pulse in his palm that recalls his own heaving heart
the day he flew into a net and hung there thirsting
in the woods where only a wasp moved,
flicking cobalt wings—

when he lets go, when he flings what he has marked
into emptiness, he follows the speck with his eye
to South America and farther, to white unmapped fields
known intimately in the minds of those who fly.

from What a Light Thing, This Stone (Sow’s Ear Press, 1999).

Read more:


About Sonja Roberts Dalglish

I love people, math, physics, and theology. I love mysteries which may explain the list above. I am a polio survivor, having had the disease in August 1954. The vaccine was declared safe in April 1955. I am very pro vaccines. They have increased the health and well being of the world. Presently, I am living just west of Corpus Christi, in Kingsville. For naturalists, this seems to be where the coastal plane and the Wild Horse Dessert meet. It is flat which gives us beautiful sunsets. One of our concerns is climate change. We are already hot and dry and getting hotter and dryer. The cattlemen and women are having to graze fewer livestock these days.
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2 Responses to Banded by God

  1. Sonja, thank you for this beautiful and meaningful addition to my Monday morning. I was not familiar with BioLogos, but it is certainly a blog I will return to, just as I do to yours, for connection and inspiration.

  2. More Help says:

    It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d certainly donate to this superb blog! I guess for now i’ll settle for bookmarking and adding your RSS feed to my Google account.
    I look forward to brand new updates and will talk about this blog with my Facebook group.
    Chat soon!

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