And no Birds Came
edited: Wednesday, July 13, 2011
By Regis Auffray
Rated "G" by the Author.
Posted: Wednesday, July 13, 2011
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A short story by Sha'Tara, local writer and friend.
And no Birds Came
[a short story by Sha'Tara]
The boy stood there, puzzled. He'd run all the way that particular day, that
first of May, to be the one to see. As expected, it was all there,
absolutely all of it, not a blade of glossy green grass, not one gnarled and
bending branch, not one shiny blue-green leaf nor even one tiny white fluffy
cloud just to the right of the haloed rising sun out of place: nothing was
missing. A perfect tableau.
At the very broken top of an ancient cottonwood struck years before by
lightning was the osprey's nest which, like a good house, had seen many
young ones hatched, nurtured and full-feathered if unsure, fly away on an
easterly breeze to test their own speed and mettle with spawning Coho or
"jacks." A round black patch in the side of a striking white-black birch
called attention to itself, whispering, "Here's where my friend downy
woodpecker makes his home year after year." Even old man Johnson's barn with partially caved-in roof still stood on the other side of the gully, at the
very edge, its sagging and jagged eaves waiting to welcome the iridescent
The boy turned slowly, feeling something new, something he could not name
struggling with what was known and familiar. Was it good? Was it bad? It was
different and that's all he could think about this thing. Like his body
inexorably pulling him from childhood into adulthood-all those new feelings
looking for their own nesting places and finding none as yet.
What was wrong? What was missing? No, it wasn't the breeze, that gentle, dry
morning breeze that told the loitering mists to disperse, broaching no
argument. It caressed his face as always and whispered through the
susurration of dagger-shaped leaves of lemon-colored willow thickets lining
the small creek that still flowed from the recent thaw. The water smelled
swampy, no longer good to drink. Skunk cabbage were already claiming the
area for themselves, dragonflies using their broad leaves as heliports.
He studied his bare feet for a while, pushing his toes in the mud to test
how deep the indentations went-a quarter of an inch shallower than
yesterday: the mud was drying fast and before you knew it, Summer would
barge in with its dragon's breath, huffing and puffing, blistering away all
that it thought unnecessarily damp, or too green. Summer was like that. By
mid-July it would have put the entire meadow to sleep, all but the crickets,
But that would be after school let out, not yet, not nearly yet. A whole two
months and more need pass. He shook his head, thinking nervously that he
wasn't at all sure how to ponder this particular green and pleasantly moist
morning into its normal and expected state. It simply wouldn't fall into
place as it should, as it always had.
But when you are hungry for knowledge, watchful and unafraid of even the
harshest reality, you will get your answer, always. And at that moment, Todd
understood. He saw it in his head. It was as if someone had erased the main
character on a famous painting and it hung in its usual place for all to
shudder at that terribly empty space. For all had been made ready for the
birds and no birds came.
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|Reviewed by Jon Willey
|To ponder and ponder again Regis. Statements of opinions. Questions with answers. Questions with no answers. I ponder. I bid you love and peace my dear friend. Jon Michael|
|Reviewed by Mary Lacey, Desertrat
Beautiful nature setting gone awry. How sad the birds never came.
|Reviewed by baz busbe
|Interesting read, loved the setting of the scene, I wanted to join the boy experiencing nature around him. God bless. Baz|
|Reviewed by - - - - - TRASK
|World Full Of Non Caring Ignorant/Illiterate Human Birds...
|Reviewed by Vivian Dawson
|Summer sun that takes your breath away
"And no Birds Came"
Certainly thoughts to ponder seeking
such knowledge would be a worthy deed
|Reviewed by Debby Rosenberg
|makes for good sci-fi....
no harshness within my current reality - I've more birds this year than ever seen before :)
|Reviewed by D Johnson
|An interesting read...and I'm with Ronald about his question.
|Reviewed by Ronald Hull
|You raise unanswered questions: Was it the ospreys or swallows that didn't come? Why didn't they come? Reminds me of Rachel Carson's Silent Spring.