Wednesday, January 15, 2014

3. Hollow Bones

Wooden Woman remembers finding out about hollow bones.

You know, hollow bones—one reason bird flight is possible. 
Such a clever and intricate adjustment for weight. 

If you love the color green choose the lime colored budgie. Gold wire cage. Food. Sand. You’ve read up on care of birds, of course. And Wooden Woman, like most pet owners, expected gratefulness for all that—in the form of birdsong.

Unblinking eyes quietly looked through the cage each day, every day.

Wooden Woman wired in a little mirror, as if a reflection can be a familiar sort of friend.

Little Bird died on a vibe of heaven, cage having been moved atop a stereo speaker 
for motivational purposes.

Wooden Woman wonders what message she should get from this.

She wonders about the time she ran out the front door and tiptoed down the steep driveway to get the mail and there it was—too soon without a shell. The beaky head damply stuck in the dirt, almost-ready wings elbowed out. Large eyes closed with lids so thin she imaged they might see right through this great loss.

No miracle of hollow bones.

No chance to be who they were meant to be, do what they were made to do.

Nine years ago Wooden Woman’s mother died. 
Her death raises murmurations even still.

In the dusky evenings of winter months small groups of starlings begin to flock; others nearby who have been feeding together join, and as if by national decree from miles around they come THEY COME, and fill the sky with breathtaking choreography. Ohhhh. OHHHHhhh.

It’s called a murmuration.

Starlings couldn't care less about the complexity of Beauty. A bird’s brain is just not ready for that. Apparently.  

Wooden Woman wonders if her momma felt her life was all it could have been.

Life so often is getting caught up in the pulsing throng, becoming like a cloud of birds, and if you don’t follow, you crash. 
But you don’t crash.

Every now and then the cloud lolls over and turns back on itself and from the crispness of the edge…

…you lead.

And this life thrills you even as it troubles you.

The Audubon site says that maybe in 5 years they will know how and why birds organize in groups.

HAH. That’s what Wooden Woman says. 


Here, take a look at this link.

Note to self: Bird bones are actually denser and heavier than our bones so they can be thin and hollow and not break.

Be kinder. Love more deeply. Fly higher.




Brian Miller said...

wooden woman is wise...and the death of a parent def echoes forward...i know that through my wife...her mom died years ago...the bird, did he die? on the speaker? thats a bit sad. never had a bird as a pet...we make of life what we will.

Craig and Bethany said...

It both thrills and troubles. So true. How interesting that these two are so often silent observers in the back of our minds. I love the arc of images from hollow bones to pet bird to murmuration and then the return to the denser than human bones. It has the flow of the murmuration on that site. Lovely link. And fabulous pictures.

I'm still wondering how the birds organize into groups!

Larkin said...

"Murmuration": I am glad to see this Vimeo again. Thank you, W.W. This time around I saw alchemical fingerprints of sky spontaneously reconfiguring—and thought of the ways Wingmaker routes and reroutes our trajectory: no matter how stiff our necks, how thick our skins, how old our bones.

Tomorrow I will seed the air above my lawn with boiling water.