Birds & Hope

450px-White-Browed_Robin“If I keep a green bough in my heart, the singing bird will come.”

This Chinese proverb symbolizes both the reliable, yet fleeting, nature of joy and the eternal upwelling of hope to me. I haven’t blogged on my love of birds before, but it struck me tonight how much a touchstone they represent to me. I can depend on their song, a flash of scarlet wing, a cocky tilt of a chickadee’s head, the liquid trill of a wren. These moments transport me out of everyday consciousness — out of misery, depression, sorrow, exhaustion, fear, doubt, loneliness — into the power of the present (or the Power of the Presence, if you will).

Something in the juxtaposition of fragility and vitality that a bird is, takes me to center and balances me there. What an amazing gift they are to the world. I always wonder just what it is that makes them move me so — from the hummer feisty vitality to the majesty and power of the hawk, they have an instantaneous transforming effect.

Or maybe it’s just that you have to be looking upward to see them…


2 thoughts on “Birds & Hope

  1. The first sign that summer will arrive in this cold part of the US is the red-winged blackbird. Not the most beautiful, nor the most musical, but it’s song reminds me that something new is about to begin. I love watching the birds and listening to their chatter and melodies.

  2. Thanks for your comment. I used to live in NJ and it was the proverbial robin on the front lawn that signaled spring, and the red-wing at the nearby pond that heralded summer. You’ve made me happily nostalgic. Thanks.

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