I’d say it was luck, but I wonder about that. Maybe luck is a series of choices disguised as chance. Maybe there’s some grand plan and we follow the dominoes and fall as and when we should. Maybe it is timing. But whatever it is, it is. And there we are one day, astonished and spellbound at the sight of how it all added up.
At 2:10pm this past Thursday, I was contorting my hand into all sorts of positions, trying to photograph an aging ranunculus (as a side note, ‘ranunculus’ means ‘little frog’ — there’s a story there).
The flower was beautiful, more so in its late stages than in its prime when it was flame red and vibrant and wild. I was in a class recently and the teacher talked about how her mother always encouraged her to notice the life of the flower and to really pay attention to the layers of complexity aging brought to the bloom. And so, I was there in the window doing just that when it happened.
A bang. A distinct and heartbreaking bang that I instantly recognized: a bird had flown with full force into a window. This chipping sparrow bounced off and landed on the snow and in the shadows, stunned and alone and lost. But breathing.
He looked so cold and so shaken. And I felt helpless and clumsy, as I approached him. I knew he needed to get off the snow, before his system went further into shock and so, ever so slowly, I slid my hand under him and picked him up with my gloved paws and tucked him into my body to keep him warm and protected from the wind. Oddly, perhaps because he was so dazed, he did not panic nor did he try to flee. Instead, he gripped my gloves and let me hold him and as I did, I tried to locate any breaks or wounds on him. But there was nothing, and we sat together for some time, studying each other.
And then in a flash, perhaps half-recovered, he jumped onto my arm where he was nearly eye-to-eye with me. I won’t tell you the full chat we had in that time, but I will say we had one and I’m sure he was both letting me know he wasn’t scared of me while also trying to understand how this giant, aging creature holding him, only wanted to heal him. And I swear he nodded thanks. I did, too. And then, he was gone. - 2 days ago