WHY DO BIRDS so engage the human imagination? The question is complex but the answer inexorably seems to converge on a single theme: the physiology of birds. They walk upon the surface of the Earth on two legs, much like ourselves; then they do something of which we can only dream. They fly away. It is their movement from our own bipedal, gravity-bound condition towards a mastery of a completely unattainable realm – the heavens – which has captivated us. It is surely why birds serve as recurrent metaphors in a multitude of art forms for the passage of time, the movement of the human mind and the ...


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