White Deer Twins on the Riverwalk

White Deer Twins on the Riverwalk
These rare white deer twins were born this summer and have found a safe home at Dan Daniel Park and on the Riverwalk
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My name is David Hoffman. I teach English and journalism at Averett University, but I have two side interests - writing and photography. I also enjoy walking daily with my English setter, Sadie, and my wife, Elizabeth, on the Danville, Virginia, Riverwalk. As a novice to studying nature, I am fascinated by the slightest facets of the great outdoors, but most of my pictures are of birds - I don't know a lot about them, but I am learning more and enjoying taking pictures of them daily. I also take pictures of plants, other animals, and insects. All pictures posted for each day were taken on the day of my blog entry.

Leave a comment if you have the time or e-mail me at dhoffman@averett.edu


Friday, August 6, 2010


(AUGUST 6, 2010) This morning, as Sadie and I walked on the Riverwalk, I noticed the creatures of the woods - the birds, the insects, and Sadie. I was especially taken by the eyes of those birds and insects I saw.

The Bible says that the "eyes are the window of the soul." I wasn't quite sure what that means, but I guess I was trying to understand the souls of those creatures I saw this morning.

Most of the insect eyes are fairly complex with the damselfly moving its eyes around on its head, the bumblebee staring with its brownish oval eyes, the butterfly with round black dots for eyes, the fly with its colorful orange eyes, and wasps with dark black oval eyes. What did those eyes say about the souls of those insects? I still don't know what it means, but as you look at the pictures above, image what those eyes may tell you about an insect.

The water fowl (ducks and geese) have eyes that are more similar to human eyes except these birds have round eyes. The similarity comes with the black pupil of the bird surrounded by another color (a brownish orange). The expressions in the eyes don't seem to change according to the mood of the bird - from just chillin' on a summer morning to fear as the sojourner and his dog approach.

The songbirds have eyes that are more akin to the insects in that they don't have a pupil surrounded by color. The eyes of the songbirds, however, seem softer than the insect eyes. If I were to try to judge the soul of the songbirds based upon their eyes, I would have to say that they have a sense of peace within their souls.

And, of course, Sadie's eyes. She uses them (and her other senses) constantly as we walk on the Riverwalk. She is searching for a butterfly to point at or some strange bug to sniff. Her eyes are even more like humans. With her smiling eyes, her soul must be rich in joy and peace.

There was a sad event to this pleasant day. This afternoon my neighbor called me over to look at a hummingbird that was at her feeder. The small bird wasn't moving and had its long bill in the sugar water of the hummingbird feeder. My neighbor held the small bird in her hands, and the bird didn't move except for looking up with some sad eyes. Perhaps the tiny bird had starved or fallen out of the nest too soon. I'm sure that the soul of this small weak bird is now flying around somewhere.

I wonder, if humans become angels (some religions believe that), can birds become angels too? If so, I guess that cuts down on the cost of wings, since the birds (and most insects) would bring their own.

MY eyes are tired now as I finish this entry. It was, however, another good morning on the Riverwalk.

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