Monday, July 18, 2011

Flying: Time to Leave the Nest

"There are no birds in last year's nest." Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, American poet, 1807-1882

So this is it. That time one never imagines to come so... soon. Yet as every mother can attest, 'the days are long and the years are short'. For me, this has been an especially difficult change to embrace - The Empty Nest...Even writing it seems to trivialize it. Yet, I had help with this one as Mother Nature saw fit to provide a safe haven for a Robin to build her nest right in view of our kitchen window. It took all of three days for this industrious female to construct a sturdy home with sticks and mud nestled securely in the crotch of a Juniper. It took another three days to lay two eggs, and two weeks for those lovely aqua blues to hatch. Of the two babies, only one survived, despite the mother's valiant and tireless effort with feeding and keeping them warm. What a sight to see, up close and personal, with her wing spread out umbrella-style protecting the hatchlings from heavy rains. Her sharp eyes never left our gaze as we ooggled and aahhed at the antics that came so naturally. And, so the day came a mere two weeks after hatching, when it was time to go... Just... like... that. Time to go, giving us the privilege to witness the very shaky maiden flight. Certainly the parallel was easy to make as the last of my brood flies the coop. We love, we nurture, we raise to send them on their way...There will be no birds in this year's nest...but it will always be feathered and safe when they return.

To learn more about the American Robin (Turdus migratorius), check out All About Birds, from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology

'A robin feathering its nest has very little time to rest..' from Spoonful of Sugar, Mary Poppins

1 comment:

Gardeningbren said...

Empty hard to bear, but wonderful Mother Nature has helped.

Our robins also seem to have lost one babe in a hard windstorm...but still feeding so there's at least one more in the nest.

Your post was very touching. Thankyou.

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