December 15, 2006

Was raking up the last of the pine cones for future woodstove fuel, the dog trailing my ankles, when a sparrow darted to the feeder and back to the cedar hedge and a pair of chickadees hopped into the low branches of the nearby fruit trees, waiting. Earlier that day when I had filled the feeder, before even I had let go, a chickadee landed on the other side and began to feed. This time I set down the rake and settled down on the concrete steps to wait, the dog comfortably tucked against me.

I did not have to wait long.

A minute, maybe two: and five, ten, a score of small birds swept in upon the feeder and back to the cedar hedge alive with bird voices, again and again and again in a wave of cresting feathers; and then flashes of blue and red as the larger jays and cardinals found their places within the hedge and swept in in their turn. Within our own silence the dog and I watched them come and go and listened to the excited chatter.

And when the birds had once again settled in the cedar hedge and the excitement settled down to a constant murmur of birdsong, I re-filled the feeders, the dog at my heels, and went inside.

(Of course, an hour later, the dog remembered that it was Time For His Walk Now, which was another story entirely.)

Sounds very therapeutic!
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