Some days the fragility of creation presents itself on our doorstep - or windowsill. A thump was heard and my son Jeremy said,
- O dear, there's a dead bird on your roof. He's going to fall into the eave.
and Mum said
- leave it, it's been drinking - all that ripe fruit - it'll wake up.
We pondered if it was alive, this 'dead bug' lying on its back, white belly fir fluffed over its legs. Minutes pass. There seems to be a pulse.
- hey - he's moved over to his feet
and sure enough, its claws caught the roof and it didn't fall into the eave.
- but some predator could still snatch him up in a flash, I said, - I don't want that happening here.
But it was too far away to reach. I thought of attaching a spoon to my cane and lifting it from the drizzle into the warmth of the inside.
- no, said Jeremy - he'll just fly up into your ceiling and you won't be able to get him down.
He had a point - a scared bird inside can do a lot of damage, and we had just had the place cleaned.
We wondered if its wings were hurt or if it had broken its neck.
But I was getting my cane and Jeremy suggested instead the broom handle and a wicker basket. Mum was looking in the book to identify it - a warbler, a wren, - someone can tell us. It moved again, looking as if it might be getting stronger - waking up.
We removed the mop-head and attached the wicker basket with duct tape to the mop - a beautiful carriage from our point of view. I set it down gently next to the patient, ready to cover it if some crow or gull decided this was a nice meal. We put a few toasted pumpkin seeds in it - but that bird just looked - caption anyone?
Then after 10 minutes of coaxing, losing all the pumpkin seeds in the eaves-trough one at a time, talking bird talk in a cooing and chirping sort of way, it suddenly leaped out of reach and in a flash was across to the trees in the distance.