Tuesday, April 28, 2015


Almost raucous, three little yellow halos carrying on behind a dark round hole in a  yellow house with a tin roof, hanging by a wire from one, thus far, sturdy nail pounded into the side of a stucco patio wall.  I think of them as the Birds on a Wire Family.

This has been an event for about four weeks now, give or take a day or two.  They are hanging just outside my patio door.  If I sit in my chair, it is hard not to watch them.  In the last week, activity has certainly picked up.

I hung the house up when I first moved in.  The nail was already available. The wire caught and I took that as a good sign and a good way to get the house out of the way, never really considering the house would be taken.  The same house had sat in a different spot and never been considered.

I caught them taking selfies on their honeymoon.  They were flying up and back and up and back to get a good shot of this great starter home tucked away in a corner.  They really couldn't believe their good luck.  Seemingly perfect.  So nerve wracking to find that first home which will welcome little ones.  Of course, it did need some work and days were spent bringing in supplies.  I don't know where they got their energy.  Sometimes, brush would be twice the bird's length.  I think they are brown wrens.

With great endeavor, the pictures were hung and activity ceased.  Papa would bring in a tidbit of lunch and reach into the hole to check on progress.  I could walk up to within a couple of feet of the house and look in, only to see two beedy bird eyes looking out at me.  Papa would often come to stand on the door handle turned perch.  After much discussion, he would give up and fly away.  Those last few days are very tricky.  Ask any mother-to-be.

I knew when the day arrived.  Papa was all over the place.  Trying to be in the house and shooed out, flying back and forth to the nearby fence.  Much conversation, to be sure.  I can only imagine the numbers of times he was informed that he really had "no idea" or he was told he wasn't needed or that he should have paid attention during the birthing classes instead of making jokes with his friend who also was there to learn just how to help their little mothers.

If I thought they were busy before, I was wrong.  Now, just watching made me breathless.  Like a tag team, they spent days going back and forth with succulent bird nutrition, reminding me of other new parents carrying for a new child with bottles and formula and clinking baby food jars.  Raising youngins is serious business.

On rainy days, I saw sopping wet birds bring food in and carrying out trash.  And sometimes, I figured that Mama Bird was ready to fly over to the nearby Starbucks and order a Tall Latte with one regular sugar and put her feet up.  But no.  They both were steady in their vigil.  Those babies were eating them out of house and home.  By now, they must be as big as little piglets.  I don't know how they will manage to budge themselves out of the little house and fly.  But I saw one beak poking out of the front and I imagine it won't be long.

That little house of constant activity lies close to peril.  A day ago, I saw a hawk fly just above the roof line.  Of course, Mama and Papa were all about that and sending out warnings.   Fear and trepidation entered my life.  Oh no.  What if?  I wasn't prepared for this or the baby squirrel the hawk dropped just outside the edge of the patio.  I tried to do what I could but nothing would help.  This is the wild, living on my patio in the middle of the city.  I can't do anything to interfere.  Can three baby birds make it, successfully?

Pray for the stucco.  The house is sturdy.  The wire is strong for hanging.  The nail looks thick.  But none of that matters if the stucco doesn't hold.  The little home is security and warmth.  The wire and nail necessary to add to protection.  The nail is hammered into a base which holds everything up.  Remember the stucco.

Baby birds flying off.  Fly Baby Bird, fly.  Leave the nest and keep going.  Give it everything. Presenting world and new and possibility.  Trust the wings. Carry the love bestowed on you so diligently as you were becoming.  As you become.

Not one sparrow shall fall to the ground without God knowing it.   Matthew 10:29

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