BIRDS AND PEOPLE
N E S T
Under the little overhang above our kitchen entrance two birds built nests a few years back, one in each corner. These nests were small, neat, well designed and maintained, so more than one generation of birds were able to call it a home.
This year a new bird-lady appeared on the scene, dragging a long, thin branch from our bush next to the kitchen. She started to re-design the nest on the right, bringing more and more branches and long-long vines onto the scene. Pretty soon a huge and disorganised bundle of grasses, vines, branches showed her diligent home making efforts. When she was almost satisfied with the results, she picked some of the white flowers from the bush, probably to line the nest, and I think she also picked some violets. I thought to myself, a human baby will never have a crib lined with flowers and violets, -- what a shame! And then tragedy happened: a windstorm blew the whole beautiful construction onto the steps. Luckily there were no eggs in it yet. I put this beauty of a nest onto the ledge, where she was able to retrieve at least the building materials with ease. But she had other ideas.
Almost immediately she started to build onto the other nest, on the left side. She worked really hard and brought brand new materials, even more fancy than before. When the nest was so tall that it reached the roof of the overhang, she constructed an entrance hole into its front. I was not sure, after a while if there are babies in it or not? And to my horror: the nest was down on the steps again, this morning. I looked for little residents, but thank God, there was none. No eggs either. And no anchors of any kind that could have saved the nest. The shocking experience is new, it happened this morning and I am still awaiting the futher actions.
While thinking of this particular little bird, then the entire bird kingdom, then the animal kingdom all together I came to the realisation, that generations of the non-human inhabitants grow up in front of us, without harming the environment, leaving everything as God created it.
And then I remembered something else. On a National Geographic presentation they showed a group of people living in the jungle. I don’t remember the place, where, the film crew wanted to give the viewers an accurate picture of the lives of these people. They explained their food sources, also that the building of houses is the job of women. Just like my little bird here, they collect long, flexible brances of living bushes, stick both ends of the branch into the ground, thus forming a bow, and when they judge that they are enough, they weaved them together with horizontal branches. The whole effort took less than a day. The film crew asked, how long they stay in one place? They answered it depends on the food source. Sometimes they have to move so soon, that their houses did not have time to grow roots.
Can you picture what our words mean: I hardly had time to grow roots in Seattle, or ...etc. We talk about time and place. We are not talking about nature, about trees and real roots. We build houses of bricks, iron, glass, plastic, dig up the earth to build parking places and roads – all this scars our Earth. And I feel it scars our souls too. Our life-styles make a refugee out of life!
Our brethren in the forest live, like my little bird under the kitchen ledge. They cut some branches for their houses, but they grow roots and begin to grow, and maybe, when they come that way again they will find, that their „houses” not only brought forth new branches, but started to grow fruits, thus replacing the ones they consumed while living in that neighborhood. They not only did not take anything from the Earth – they added to it with their presence.
The ultimate gift for future mankind!
What can we humans do?