Little Nest

I found this fallen nest this morning while out feeding my critters. My mind can’t help but go to the little owl who’s been hooting a lonely, somber hoot for days, if not weeks, every morning before the sunrise…(the one I mentioned here only days ago:

I did hear her this morning, long before dawn, when I slipped on my boots and flannel shirt to try and see the lunar eclipse around 4am. I did see it, after almost giving up, peeking red and wild between the heavy trees that cover this swamp I call home.

I also saw a single shooting star.

While out there (the first time, the 4am lunar eclipse time) I heard the owl twice hoot from the same spot she always does, but when that darkest part of the day–the heaviest breath before morning–came around, I didn’t hear her.

I wonder if she left, throwing her empty nest to the ground, rocketing out into the world: wild like the red moon, swift like the shooting star?

Or maybe this nest isn’t hers at all and I’m filling in the gaps because I want so badly for her to fly.

Either way, there is something so sweet, so heart tugging about a bird’s nest. I’m sad when they fall, even if they’ve been abandoned for a long time. They are or were safe homes. They are or maybe wanted to be hatching places. They’re creatively woven with the discarded things we step on or walk past without ever noticing…pine needles, twine, leaves, and shedded hair sewn together to make a cozy home.

I’ve left the nest on my patio; I can’t bring myself to discard it, even if it’s breaking. Surely there are other birds or squirrels or tree things that could find it and recycle its materials. Surely, in one way or another, it could be patched and sewn and called home again.

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