Home » Writers’ Corner: ‘Birds on a Wire’ – Sturgis Journal

Writers’ Corner: ‘Birds on a Wire’ – Sturgis Journal

by Arifa Rana

Anyone who knows me, or has read my work, can testify how much I love nature. It’s true. I am a woman of the woods, a walker of wild places, a lover of wind and sun. For me, there are few things as joyous as being in a completely natural place. The sounds, textures and scents fill my soul. One merely needs to visit the small plot of land I call home to know this is true.
I have almost completely removed the grass from my yard and replaced it with perennials, bulbs, vines and shrubs. There are several varieties of dwarf maples and various flowering trees situated about the grounds in an informal arrangement. What I mean by informal is that they are planted wherever there was suitable open space available. I also have a catalpa tree and an oak tree, both of which I grew from seeds many years ago. They are growing tall and provide dramatic counterpoints to my miniature forest.
My garden flows. A person can wander from the back porch to the koi pond on a meandering path. It feels like a great distance has been traversed, but it hasn’t. My yard is very small. It’s just full: full of plants and full of life. There are birds, squirrels, a raccoon, an opossum, our cats, and our family dog. Occasionally, a groundhog stops by, uninvited, for a snack. The place is restful and busy at the same moment. I love it.
My upstairs hallway window overlooks the backyard. The entire garden is laid out below. From this window I can watch my cats as they lounge on the deck, their attention focused on the collection of birdfeeders hanging just out of reach. The squirrels manage the distance quite well.
I installed the feeders in December because a large number of birds decided to over-winter in my garden. Every morning I stand at this window and watch the show. I see the intertwining branches of the trees and the stretches of cable that links my house to the power grid. Birds and squirrels dance among the branches and along the wire like circus performers. 
Sometimes my cats climb the trees to see how close they can get. The answer is not close enough. The cats stretch along the branches; the birds merely hop to the next branch. Sorry, Sylvester, better luck next time. House sparrows perch on the phone line that runs near my chimney and stop to admire their reflections in the glass. My house cats, whiskers and tails twitching with excitement, can only chirp at the sparrows, having no better luck catching a feathered snack than their outside cousins.
I started to keep track of the birds that have stopped by. Cardinals, Tufted Titmouse, Black-capped Chickadees, Blue Jays, White-breasted Nuthatches, Sparrows, Starlings, Finches, Robins, Crows, Northern Flicker, and Dark-eyed Juncos have all graced my yard this winter. 
Mourning Doves, Goldfinches, Red-winged Blackbirds, Grackles, Baltimore Orioles, Woodpeckers, Cat Birds and Hummingbirds will show up soon, now that the weather is warming. 
Recently, a pair of Eastern Bluebirds perched on the wire near the window. I was so excited! The pair sat long enough to pose for photos before they flitted away. Nothing says spring like a Bluebird. I am still smiling.
Tip: Take pictures. Use them as backdrops and inspiration for your tales.
Bio: Christine Cox lives and works in SW Michigan. Birds stare into her windows and she stares back in awe of them. She can be contacted at ccox2190@yahoo.com.
Sturgis Writers’ Mill is a community of writers who constructively encourage, support and challenge each other as they discover their unique voices. Any opinion expressed is solely that of the author.


0 comment

Related Posts

Leave a Comment