Hope is the thing with feathers. So wrote Emily Dickenson. It was a rather positive sentiment from such a dark and gloomy lady, and unusual for her.
And yet I can't argue with her at all..
A year ago I put up a bird feeder on our deck. It's amazing how such a simple thing could capture my interest for so long; but everyday I find myself staring at a long line of hungry little birds flitting back and forth. They command my attention in a way little else can. You see, birds are perfection in design and performance. They are perfectly adapted to do everything they are supposed to, they're the living personification of evolution turning out as it should. It brings me comfort to know such things exist and it's no surprise Darwin found his way watching them in action. That's always been enough to keep my interest..
But 2 weeks ago it got even better. As I was filling the feeder a Chickadee who apparently couldn't wait flew in and grabbed a seed from the scoop I was using for seeds. Far from being shy he took his time selecting which one he wanted before flying off. Entranced, I put some seeds in my hand and held it out for a bit. Amazingly another one landed right in my palm for his free meal, and then another after that one had left. Since then I've found that whenever I go out with a handful of seed I'm almost guaranteed a personal visit..
Now I know that these birds don't love me. They aren't my little buddies, and they don't want to hang. They just want to freeload a meal. But the fact is, I find it wonderful and heartwarming that they're not frightened of me, and that brings me joy..
Hope with feathers indeed..