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Wednesday, January 29, 2020

A Bird at the Window

I was sitting at my desk when a small blue and black and red bird landed on the sill outside and looked in. I looked back and our eyes connected in the way people connect with animals and for a moment I considered the possibility that there was more to the animal than thoughts of worms and where to sleep when it’s cold or raining.

What I found most interesting was the bird didn’t fly away and stood there staring at me.

After a time I decided to stand and open the window and as I did the bird didn’t fly away, instead it entered through the window without a screen and alighted on a shelf filled with books, none of which were particularly interesting and none of which had anything to do with birds. Not even penguins.

When I sat back down at my desk and proceeded to return to my pen and paper, the books propped up on cheap stands, the thoughts that had nothing to do with a wild bird standing on a shelf full of books, I found I couldn’t concentrate on the thoughts that had preceded my small visitor. Things that involved angels on pedestals and the romanticization of things and people. The idea that there is nothing pure in the world, not ever has been. Yet, the fetishization of purity still. The idea that we can achieve the impossible.

The bird didn’t seem to care much about anything, especially not on the words I was attempting to put to paper. Nor did it seem to care that I put no trust in the devices, my phone or computer, sitting on the desk behind the books and pens, the pencils and erasers. The errata involved in the things I work on and with and that feed the demons of thought and instinct.

Eventually the bird made a noise that was meant to be a chirp or a song and ended up something else entirely. It looked at me one more time and then took to the air and out of the window and never returned.

My thoughts never returned to what they were and eventually I set aside my writing and my books and walked away from my thoughts convinced the bird knew more than it let on.

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