the day's heat lessens, birds cry out calls of ownership, love and need, all
mingling together into a clamor of I’m here! Right here! Stay away! Hello!
Hello! Find me. Love me! We’re starving! Feed us! Hurry!
Mom! Mine! Hello!
Stay away! Hurry! Hello! Hello!”
Indigo Buntings scissor the air with
high pitched song. Blue Jays arrow from
branch to branch, announcing their flight, more important than anyone
else. Crows gang up on bigger
birds. Want to fight? Come on, come on, want to fight? Sparrows, the white trash of the bird
kingdom, serenade more sweetly than expected.
Mourning Doves pretend to be owls in the distance. Chipmunks (not birds, but want to be their
friends even though they are often ignored because they are like the boy who
cried wolf) make an annoying sound like a nail being hammered into tin, over
and over and over again. Cardinals only
speak to each, so much in-love that they must stay in constant contact. Hawks, high above, whistle like a tea kettle
in the heavens. And robins sunbathe,
waiting for a moment of silence before bursting into full fledged song, putting
the rest to shame.
Then by nine or so, they begin to
quiet, and the world belongs to louder voices coming from inside houses built
too near each other, the narrow alleys encasing the echoes, holding on to them
until morning when they finally drift upwards with the fog, leaving pressure on
eyes, aches in throats, and dreams in tender hearts of a sweeter song,
somewhere, sometime, long ago.