Bear Me Away -  Cover


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Poetry Takes Flight: Birds of California
by James Roethe

Published by Bird-in-Hand Publications

188 pages, 8 x 8 inches
130 color photographs

Softcover retail price $29.99
Hardcover retail price $39.99

Softcover ISBN: 9798218102760
Hardcover ISBN: 9798218143213

Printed in the US on acid-free paper

Designed by Lucky Valley Press

Distributed worldwide by Ingram
(Book is returnable by retailers)

Birds of California

by James Roethe

Poetry Takes Flight is James Roethe's second book about birds and his first book of poetry. The book provides the reader with a bit of knowledge about the birds of Northern California and, hopefully, some understanding of why so many people today have taken up birding as a hobby. Its focus is on the hills of San Francisco's East Bay where the author has lived, hiked and birded for the last half century.

East Bay birders are blessed with hundreds of miles of trails along the shoreline and in the hills East of San Francisco Bay, most of them part of the East Bay Regional Park District - one of the country's largest park systems and home to several hundred species of birds. In addition, the local water utility makes available to hikers an additional 60 or so miles of trails on a permit basis.

The 77 poems in Poetry Takes Flight are intended to tell readers a bit about the more common birds seen during a typical hike in Northern California. In some cases, they describe characteristics of the birds in question that new birders should look for when trying to identify birds that cross their paths. In others, the poems tell of events experienced by the author that demonstrate how even the most experienced birder can be surprised at the antics of these wonders of nature. The hope is that some readers will become more interested in birds - look for them when hiking or put up feeders so as to enjoy them when at home. For birds are fascinating to watch.

And if the book piques the interest of a just few readers to take up birding, that will be a bonus.

For the last half century, Jim Roethe has lived in Orinda, California, an East Bay suburb of San Francisco, where he has hiked and birded in the hundreds of miles of trails that are part of the East Bay Regional Park system and the local water utility.

Jim is a member of the Golden Gate Audubon Society and has participated in a number of bird counts as part of Golden Gate Audubon’s citizen science efforts. For the last several years, Jim has led the North Orinda Christmas Bird Count for Golden Gate Audubon and has participated in Christmas counts in other areas of both the East Bay and the Monterey area where he maintains a second home. Jim is a semi-retired attorney who still serves as an arbitrator from time to time. In addition to his interest in birding and writing, Jim loves traveling (he has traveled in every continent except Antarctica) and has sung in a number of choirs in the East Bay.