This morning I went for a run, which is a walk on the hills. At first the sun was shining its early morning shine with some orange in the tops of the trees, and some yellow warm that makes a face feel loved. Over the brittle green bridge over the brook by the goats, and past the town dump and the graveyard, which despite their names are very nice places to pass by... Past the woodpile up on the hill where the waddley woodchuck lives. The woodchuck has a face like a beaver and a tail like a raccoon, except not as striped. And when I passed by the other day, he sat between two logs and watched me pass with his goofy teeth sticking out. I chuckled at him, tried to coax him out of that big log pile and even though I was friendly, he didn't come to say hi. But back to this morning's walk. A robin was first in the front yard. Robin with a burnt sienna belly. Robins dip their beaks into the soil and eat the worms. I read once that a robin can hear a worm wriggling underground, and that's how robin finds that worm. Good listening skills. A robin belly is like a roasted sweet potato slice- a warm orange surrounded by caramelized feathers. Sort of the way the sun looks in pictures from space. Sort of the way I wish I could roast a marshmallow, but it turns grey too quickly. Down the road I went this morning and after running a while and forgetting about all the good reasons there (clearly) are to turn around and go home, eventually I was too far from home to turn around. So on up the little hill and down the little hill and cross the brook again~ and the thought- I didn't even finish the thought, but I will finish it here- I said, "Hey, I wonder if my little sparrow buddies are flying." And I hear a "Yeep!" Much more confident than yesterday, when he was crying panic on the power line. A little sparrow crying, such a pathetic thing. I have heard a sparrow cry a most sad cry, and that was a tragedy for sure. But this little sparrow, yesterday, I will tell you what happened. Walking down the little hill and across the brook and up to the old white house, a cry hit my ears. Very nervous kind of noises. I look up, and then further up, to the top of the old house. And there where the power line meets the roof, was a sparrow- almost too fluffy to be a sparrow. Such a big fluffy body. "O do you remember?" I said to m'self. New baby sparrows have down on their bellies, but their wings look normal. And then finally I could understand his most nervous peeping and chirping that was not too pleasant to hear. I said, "You'll do great! You're meant to fly, it's ok, you'll do great. No doubt about it." And he continued on to tell me that he was all the way up here, and he did not (most definitely not) want to get from here to somewhere else with this flying thing- it might not work. We went on like that for a while- you'll do great, you're a flyer- but I'm nervous- and eventually he got a little more quiet, a little less piercing and a little more warm in his peeps. On I went a few more paces, and there amidst the magnolia tree buds were his brothers and sister- three squat sparrows with fluffy bodies, and one sleek mother bouncing here and there, who had certainly done a fine job there.
So on this outing today when I thought, "I wonder if my sparrow buddy...?" before I could think that I'd thought it he peeped, "Teep!" from the big white house, sitting on the gutter now. Having some air of pride about him. "Look at you!" Such a fluffy guy. He didn't say much, sitting next to his sister on the gutter, being generally well, and I was glad he said hello. I tilted my head back to see a black bird on the wire with a circle of dry grass in the mouth. Soon she flew into the gutter, right next to sparrow guy. Sparrow hopped away from the nest builder, hopped hopped fleetly like a little bunny to the crest of the roof. Just a sparrow, and a baby sparrow at that- when you're a sparrow you have to run away or hide from anything. I thought of "Not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it." But a knowing like that- how could we fathom an awareness like that? Infinite depth, infinite breadth, and all the ways there could be to know the tiniest feather and the turn of stars across heaven's heaven.
After the big white house is the Stafford Street steep hill, where on the left side is a hill garden in which lives more sparrows, and they came out to say that they were building their house, and sparrows build houses that are pretty wild, you know, sticking out here and there the way the actors of a Midsummer Nights dream crown themselves with garden hats that are human spun; sparrows build a bit like that. One year in the hydrangea sparrow nest, I saw some of my hair, a ribbon, and dried flowers woven into the nest- a dainty taste they have. I nodded my head to sparrow, and as I did a female cardinal flew by and alighted on an apple tree, where perhaps she was building her nest too. Maybe it was already built! They have their babies on the early side, I think. Onward then as woodpecker goes a whack a whack a whack in the woods and cold clouds cover the sun. Woodpecker is hard to see but always there going a whack a peck about, as perseverance is. Not always visible but still a 'goin. Keep going, good friend, says the silent wind through woodpeckers. With my precocious bird I tap your shoulder to say keep going and have a little faith. Running and running and running along, I was almost finished, almost home, and two bright cardinals, feeling exhilarated themselves, flew by my side, flew by the brook through the bramble, friends of bright red inferno, or passion, hey Good Friday. Two cardinals and a good man from long time ago, may he be blessed.
Moon is cold gray rock. But she is great in her steadfastness. Do you know what? There once on earth were no flowers. In the Cretaceous Period, flowers appeared. And when the flowers appeared, then hummingbirds appeared. And bees. And that just goes to show that the whole world is magic.