the irony of a baby bird dead on my doorstep
|This morning a baby bird, blue and fuzzy fell from the nest high up by the light on my front porch. It was one of four in the next generation of the little bird family that had warmed the same spot in our welcome rafter for ten years at least.
I bent down for closer look, was it breathing? Yes, taking tiny puffs, its little breast rising in quick desperate successions, still heaving from the struggle lost only moments ago some 15 feet above.
It was a simple reminder of the fragility of life that buzzed my door like a special telegram – prodding me to recall that today is my deceased father’s birthday. Of all mornings this morning I did not need a dying baby bird at my feet. Still this preciously sad beating blue fuzz-ball demanded that I do something. I knew it needed the relief of my husband’s quick and fast hammer, but I did not let on that the situation could get any worse.
I stood there contemplating the fall. Did its siblings decide May 11 was “Natural Selection” day? I had to know, did it jump or was it pushed?
It mattered for the irony, the fore shadowing, the scary metaphor represented on the doormat of my life. It mattered as I contemplated my own little bird, who flew the coop at seventeen too anxious to fly solo, now faltering, flapping, tossed about the shifting winds of her self-proclaimed independence. It mattered.
Did it chirp a rambunctious birdie speech, “Hey Mom, look what I can do?” Or was it just fed up with the nest, “I’m takin’ the next tree outt’a here, soon as I get some fuzz on my wings.”
Was it a clumsy plop? Or a head-on nose drive? A flatter of wings just not quite strong enough for flight? I bet there was a collective “Uhhhh ooooh” of tiny chirps when “Bud” or “Sis” went splat.
No matter it had been too early to leave the nest.
“Tomorrow is Mother’s day,” I remind the mama bird flapping madly around my head and she flies quickly back to her nest. I take a sip of coffee, ask my husband to “take care” of the situation, and dream of the day my baby bird finds her balance, spreads strong wings and flies home to see me.