ovenbirds are one of those birds you hear all summer long if you spend any time in the north woods, to the extent that their call becomes a little bit monotonous. like the red-eyed vireo, or the phoebe, or the eastern wood peewee, or even, on the occasional sleepless summer morning around 4:00 am, when all you want is to turn over for another couple of hours of sleep, the infuriatingly persistent american robin. it’s awfully hard to see an ovenbird in person, though. because their green backs blend so perfectly with the deep woods where they sing anonymously all day long. it was a melancholy pleasure, therefore, to see an ovenbird this morning on my rear deck. his head and body bent into a most gracefully sinuous line that displayed his spotted beauty, and told the tale of his violent collision with our window. we’re very sorry, well-dressed stranger. we would much rather have been bored by your cheerful call all summer than made your acquaintance under these circumstances.