Distractions

by | Jan 22, 2019

Today’s distractions include the ongoing, post-storm Chainsaw Melee, as neighbors rid their properties of downed trees. The constant noise from the chainsaws has wrapped a band around my head that squeezes every time sharpened teeth bite into wood. The clean up is necessary; cables that supply us with electricity and internet have to stay clear, and downed trees equal free firewood.

The day’s other distraction has wrapped its fingers around my heart.

Prior to the storm, our resident raven pair chatted away throughout the daylight hours. I could see them fly by the house, moving tree to tree or soaring along the coastal embankment. They would also perch–as passerines do–on one or two of the fir trees ringing our yard. While up there, the raven pair engaged in an ongoing commentary, which often seemed centered around informing other birds of the location of our housecats.

After December 21st’s massive windstorm, the calls of wintering birds was as absent as the hum of electricity, and when I heard the first raven calls pierce that deep quiet, the voice was singular. No answering chirps or barks, not then, not three weeks later.

My goal today was to spend 5 hours in my writing cabin, diving deep into the place where my muse lounges, dreaming up stories for me to put on the page. I started. Opened documents, chose the main characters, got my butt in the chair and a chapter and a half on the page.

Then the raven arrived, solo, clutching the uppermost bit of a fir tree and chirping its heart out. Steadily, perhaps two to three seconds between each call, going silent when the chainsaws were at their grittiest.

No other raven has answered, at least not that my human ears can hear. And so my human heart hurts for this magnificent bird, this avian neighbor with its home in the trees.

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