Bird droppings from Estonia: The bear’s dilemma
Arvamus 16 Apr 2012 Hilary BirdEWR
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Spring is here! Old Man Winter held on very fiercely this year - just a week ago we were having snow and it was down to –10 degrees at night … but now the sun is shining, there’s not a cloud in the clear blue sky, the storks and geese are back and the Ülenurme cats are preparing for the hunting season. There has already been one catch...

My big news is that I now have my own monthly column in Maaleht, translated by the excellent Mati Soomre (also know as A.Itskok or Willem Sakspere) and am working very hard (and believe me it is hard work!) on completing my anthology (in English) of Estonian literature. This means that I am finding it hard to find time to write Bird droppings. I am, therefore, going to send my Maaleht pieces (now called Elame, näeme, Live and learn) once a quarter as so many people have told me that they enjoy them. I apologise if you seen some of the material before but I hope to write more original letters after the magnum opus is out of the way. I hope this will be later this year …

Here’s a lovely spring bit of verse from a book called Sheep don’t go to school, a book of silly poems from Eastern Europe – and here is one I particularly like for spring from our fellow Finno-Ugric Hungarians …

The bear’s dilemma

Winter’s gone, here comes spring
Grizzly bear sits pondering:
Back to sleep or time to wake?
What a terrible choice to make!!

To leave the cave? Explore the wood?
There might be berries. Could be good.
And is the honey nice and sticky?
That is the question. Oh how tricky

SANDOR WEÖRES , 1913 – 89, Hungary
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