in earnest

by bam

what with all the hubbub out my window yesterday, it was darn near impossible to get anything done here at the little keyboard that is my thinking life.
that’s mama up there, with the long scrap of muslin hanging from her beak. someone’s old bedspread, i’m pretty sure.
not much later, it was yet another beak and yet another bit of hand-me-down bedding.
the sparrows, it seems, have moved on from simple sticks and twigs and grasses. they are feathering their nest in earnest. deep earnest.
and when not flitting back and forth from wherever their scrapyard is, they were making layovers on the serviceberry and rhododendron right out my window.
lucky me. lucky rhododendron.
for not only were the sparrows deeply engaged in bedding for their babies. they were deeply engaged in, apparently, making those babies.
she would perch, innocently enough. catch her breath, it seemed. he would flutter over. arch wings. ascend. oscillate. again and again. perch. flutter. arch. ascend. oscillate. oh my.
right before my very eyes. all morning long.
so many times i nearly started aching for the mama. i thought about calling out the window, asking if she might want to come in for a little respite. spread her wings, put her feets up. take a gosh-darn break.
but i didn’t.
i let nature hold its sway.
my bird friend tj, he told me. warned me. let nothing get between a sparrow and her intent on multiplying the species.
it seemed, indeed, that something fertile was in the air. ‘twas may day after all. and the moon is full. for the first of two times this month, i’ll have you know. it even smelled, well, ripe outside. this is propagation season.
and i, just the other side of the glass, got to watch it all. got to feel, for a while there, that i was smack dab at the epicenter of the re-creating universe.
while some spend their day glued to CNN, i spent my day tuned into the sparrows. i admit, at a few deeply personal moments, i felt a bit like mrs. kravitz, the nosey-body who minded everybody’s business back in the old days, on “bewitched,” just one of the black-and-whites that i was weaned on.
but mostly i felt blessed. this is, if not quite sacred, rather filled with something anointed by the heavens. i was mesmerized.
far as i know, though, the little sparrows paid no mind to me. they certainly never paused. never tap-tapped on my window, to ask if i might please close my eyes, look the other way, perhaps. they carried on as if i wasn’t there.
how odd, it made me think, the distinctly parallel universes that make up this busy world. especially in the spring. the air, it seems, is buzzing. thick with drama.
no wonder when you open up the door, step outside, listen to the softer sounds–not the city buses, the jackhammers, the screeching tires–but the bird chatter, the calling back and forth from limb to limb, it’s downright action-packed.
only, mostly, we don’t notice.
there is so little intersection between the worlds of us and them. and we, at least, are missing much. they, i fear, are missing little. we are not a species setting such a good example. if only we would stop. if only we would listen.
yet again, i pound that drum: shhhhhh. tiptoe. the world’s unfolding at our feet and at our fingertips. it is ours to gulp. to inhale. to fill our lungs, our hearts, our heads.
the birds, the bees, the buds. they are deep at work, and theirs is the task of recreating. they go about their business without the mayhem that we two-legged, reportedly-bigger-brained creatures seem so particularly adept at these days.
the sparrows have no wars, no school shootings.
they carry on, as they’ve done for hundreds of thousands of years. each spring, as the sun inches ever higher in the sky, as the full moons of may keep the night from turning dark, they dig for worms and bite-size spiders, they tuck their little heads into their wings, they sleep, they lay and warm their eggs.
they pay no mind to the lady watching from the window, the lady who knows full well how rich the show, watching all the world continue on in earnest.

anyone else captivated by the drama out the window? anyone else getting a bird’s eye view of what it takes to propagate the species? anyone else wholly distracted by the fluttering of bird wings?