Monday, May 23, 2011

The Visit

****** Long fascinated by the incredibly versatile sounds birds make, I often focus attentively on their measured tweets and twirts, and patiently share the gap in communication which the sender must endure until he receives a reponse. I enjoy these conversations which I'm certain contain vital information regarding tracking systems, weather conditions, head and tail wind velocities and other crucial flight data. They may even be discussing navigational routes for the next trip while job assignments are posted. My visitor this morning obviously pulled the over-night duty.

At around 3AM, a lone feathered friend perched outside my bedroom window which was open a few inches as usual. This character initiated a faint-sounding warble, and I listened in eager anticipation along with him for a group member's response. The song sketched was thin, an anemic sound I thought. Some severe and unexpected turbulence might have exerted extra pressure to his fuselage and delicate wing structure. Whatever the cause, he sounded pretty exhausted.

His visit evolved into one much longer than usual, and the intervals between his calls were lengthy, each "Yoo-hoo" producing nothing but dead air. He patiently maintained his position and then skillfully but weakly called once more.

I began to think of him as an elderly telegrapher, weary and frustrated, shaking himself to alert status, and gamely trying yet again to make a connection, not unlike the people who sit at computer monitors flinging blips and beep signals into outer space hoping to finally pick up a "Well, hello there! How the hell are you? What a nice surprise! Let's get together real soon!"

I hope my Signalman comes back tonight.


Scott Sheperd said...

I think your analogy is perfect. It's sort of sad and yet uplifting as that bird kept going. But it is nice to get a response once in a while.

Connie Ciampanelli said...

For years I've said that my favorite sound in the world is birdsong. Just this weekend, our windows were open, everything was quiet, and then a myriad of birds began their conversation.

Is nature miraculous?

Connie Ciampanelli
North Providence RI