Saturday, November 22, 2008

winter beauty

This morning my eyes drank in a beautiful sight.

I walked to the patio window in the dining room and froze from what caught my gaze. Everything was covered in inches upon inches of white. It rested on the grey-brown trees, on my neighbors roofs, and created a rounded pile upon the picnic table. The stone bird feeder had a poofy mound of the snow bursting from it. The world had that echo-y and insulated feel to it, and with my breath caught up by the sight, there was not a sound to be heard.

And then I saw the birds. Scattered all through the yards on our many, many feeders. Their features and flutters were accentuated by the white background around them. I saw little brown sparrows near the door clinging to a nylon sack of seed. Swooping in to join them was a full bodied red cardinal with a regal head and beak. To my left on a cluster of feed hung a large woodpecker. He had the rusted red head with the intricate black and white wings and white belly. He sat there pecking away at the seed block, and he was very very large. Back a little ways with the brightest Bluejay. He was not in their typical fashion of obnoxiousness, for everything was quiet as can be.

There was only a glass window and a whole other world separating me between this community of birds. It was gorgeous and rare. Some of them flew in and out, but not one truly left because the other was there. For some reason, not even the big birds gave much intimidation to the little ones. They all settled into their places and continued feeding and gathering. All of these variations of birds eating, living, and flitting about together in a gorgeously colorful existence. Against the crisp winter background, it was a truly mind capturing sight.

I thought of their diversity. Their community. Their mutual existence. And the peace and quiet. As I backed away from the glass, I wondered to myself what humanity would be like if we all behaved a bit more like these birds.

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