She sat there, quite still. She has never forgotten that time when she had tried to write a story about her sparrow. When the story was first conceived and first lived it began, she could recount the exact words: "She heard the voice, a common voice, the voice of a sparrow; their sound encircles the world" … so what?
Well, she once had her own sparrow. July 20th she arrived. September 15th, she departed, joy departed, love remained." No. She couldn’t write any more, it was not as it should be, written on the day after the sparrow left, too emotional, too melodramatic.
Then, weeks later, she recollected now that she began again. "This is a little story, about a little baby bird, a little old woman, and the sorrowful joy of finding the missing tears of love." She wondered aloud, "This is trying to be a story about a sparrow and a human being…OK. Not the right opening."
But how does one tell a story about such insignificant creatures and such a trivial event? Where to begin? At the very beginning to the end, at the end of the story to the how it began, then ramble on in a memory charged scattering of events, or should she find a twist, an irony in the telling? Why had it been so important for her to pursue the time of this story? What to say and who is going to say it? Who am I telling this story to? So: she composed her self and began again: The familiar:
She heard the voice, a common voice, the voice of a sparrow; their sound encircles the world … so what? Once she had her own sparrow. July 20th she arrived. September 15th, she departed, joy departed, love remained. As she sat there recomposing, her hand opened, a warm breath of air stirred the leaves, browns fluttered around, filled the atmosphere. And the drama, unfolded in her head, written in chronological order; it began and ended there without continuity.
"Imagine this, I wrote and read that fragment and more the day after."
So, she began again:
When the sparrow first entered my life it was perhaps a week old, featherless, eyes still shut. It has become a part of my life that will always be there. No! Terrible!
I didn’t know that it was a sparrow; it had fallen out of a borrowed swallow’s mud nest. Uh, uh.
This adventure began on a usual non-descript day in Southern California. There was an unexpected knock at the door, her student Jerry. It was too early for his lessons.
" I found this baby bird in the dirt. Can you save it? You know how to raise baby birds, please, save this one."
And after that:
Truman Capote gave Holly Golightly these word in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, "Never love a wild thing…the more you do, the stronger they get. Until they’re strong enough to run into the woods. Or fly into a tree. Then a taller tree. Then the sky… If you let yourself love a wild thing. You’ll end up looking at the sky."
She couldn’t help but smile, whenever she thought of Little Bird, she always smiled.
"I loved a wild thing; I ended up looking at the sky. But it was good; loving a wild thing for the wild thing loved me back, left me with glorious memories and the spontaneous desire, to cry, real tears; to mourn on the outside; to dismiss hidden inside anger." She began to recite to herself,
She couldn’t get the next lines into her head but:
More words had departed from her remembrances of poems past: But she still recollected:
"Little bird always had a song, simple but delightful." Again a smile crept across her lips as she thought: " I remember: Grieving. Who’d a thought that grieving was a gift waiting out there: for years and years, and years, to be accepted, given to me by a sparrow?"
Gifts had always been so hard for her to accept, to trust and to understand.
No so with The Babe, her little one, her sparrow.