Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Robin

Sarah sat in the drafty room, pulling in one trap after another. Most of them were empty. A few caught false hopes: fallen branches, a chipmunk, fur from a much larger animal. It was lonely tedious work and she was grateful for it. Working at the conservatory recording tagging birds had proven a perfect escape from life.

She sat back in her creaky chair, the dull ache in her arms forcing her to take a rest. Looking around, she noted her surroundings for the millionth time. the worn barn walls, dusty equipment, bowed rafters, creaking floorboards. There was a softness the way light slanted through some of the cracks. One of the cracks was so wide, she could see the branches of a tree that brushed against the barn. She summed them up the same way she had her life. Broken, with little beauty.

Rubbing her arms for warmth and to release the building tension, she went back to pulling the traps back in. She smiled at herself. It was the first time she had admitted there was some beauty in her life. The thought was large enough to push a door open and other similar thoughts came in. Had her emotional wounds healed over the last several months of solitude? Was she ready to face life? Could she do it without falling apart or imitating the mistakes made with her? She sat still, the rope held tightly in her hands.

The wind blew and the branches brushed against the barn wall. It drew her attention. Turning to look, she saw a Robin sitting delicately on the branch, several twigs in its mouth. Slowly, the red-bellied bird set to work building a nest. She watched silently, taking in every flight, the slow and cautious work of adding more materials, a home that slowly began to take shape, the persistence of that small creature diligent in creating a safe environment.

It was time to take flight.

*** Daily Writing Practice ***


  1. I read this over at Marc's blog. Lovely piece, Heather. "It was time to take flight" holds so much meaning. Perfect!

  2. Monica, coming form you, I am honored. Thank you.

  3. It is really wonderful heather. It really invoked some personal remembrances for me of a barn I spent to summers working in. I would have thought you had seen it.