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  • Writer's pictureCrone

Facing up to things

The bird really is very small. Not the smallest bird. Not even the smallest bird in this country. But compared to the lumbering great thing I am, the bird is very, very small. Yet he does not hesitate to fly up to me, hop around my clumsy feet, sing or "whisper sing" right in front of my huge moon face.

I am writing this while waiting for the all clear at work and I'd just told my colleagues about going to the theatre last week. I said how the applause at the end always gets me. It's like the actors are divested of the mask of character and with it, briefly, of the mask of persona, of ego... for a short time they are vulnerable. There is a rawness to the moment. an innocence. It is that which moves me - a person almost naked in front of you - the courage to shed all the onion skins of protection and they stand there with the eyes and half smiles of children.

Bobbit is not like that. He never has anything to divest himself of. At every moment he is utterly himself. He is as if unaware of his vulnerability. Not that he does not know fear... but he does not know the fear of being "just" himself. When he sings, subsings, courts, forages, preens he is inhabiting every action in a manner utterly undiluted. When Bobbit looks at me, he sees me. For the moments when he looks me in the eye, my face fills his consciousness.

I put down the camera. He has been singing from the hedge and flies to where I stand by the honeysuckle. He comes onto the perch and whisper sings, looking at me from one eye, then the other and then both together. He moves closer and the song rises in volume, his beak opens to send the sound further. He crouches, looking out from his shelter and then flies into the lilac where he sings loudly. A few refrains. It is time to do bird stuff. He zooms out of my tree to the next garden and I lose him.

Now, hours later, I can see his small form. Those eyes. the throat feathers. His stance. The raised plumes on the back of his head. The interior of the beak. For me, for that time, he filled my consciousness and is there still to be recalled, called upon, in memory.

Does the robin remember me?

Those moments with the bird give me the courage I need. Again, "I can't go on" has been the refrain in my brain. But I can. And I do.

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15 mrt.

Beautifully written, and very moving. Love the close-ups of dear Bobbit x

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