Eesti Elu
Eestlased Eestis 25 Apr 2014  Eesti Elu
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These bushes are hiire/kõrvul. They were captured on the morning of 15. aprill or mahla/kuu (sap month) in central Tallinn’s Tammsaare park. The larger-than-life sculpture of the seated, pondering writer Anton Hansen Tammsaare is close by. Photo: Riina Kindlam

Hiir is a mouse and kõrv is an ear. This is an expression to describe nature, when the first leaves are starting to peek out of their pungad (buds). Before they begin to unfurl, they resemble the pointed ears of mice, hence the expression. Kaasik on hiirekõrvul. – The birch forest is beginning to leaf-out. Oksad vaasis löövad hiirekõrvule. – Branches in the vase are leafing-out. Next to arrive will be freshly-hatched baby birds that are veri/sulil.
Veri is blood and sulg is a feather. A veri/sulg is a developing pin feather (sometimes called a blood feather), that has yet to unfurl and when a vast/koorunud or recently hatched baby bird is covered in them, it is said to be veri/sulis or -sulil. “Verisulil pesa/pojad, ees meil seisab kotka/lend…” "Pin-feathered nestlings, an eagle’s flight awaits us!" Such is the first line of a camp song from Kotkajärve dating back about 35 years, when the hundude all-laager (cub scouts sub-camp) was called kotka/pesa or eagle's nest. / Riina Kindlam, Tallinn
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