Though not of the peregrine kind, it is a falcon, nonetheless — a young, male American Kestrel, which according to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, is “perhaps the most colorful raptor in the world.”
When I first saw the bird outside my window, I thought the beak reminded me of an eagle, but the face and eyes reminded me of an owl. A closer look made clear that the beak of this bird is too small and the neck is too short to be an eagle, and owls are nocturnal birds with heart-shaped faces. They deliver messages in huge dining halls, and knock over plates and saucers, spilling drinks out of crystal glasses and onto clattering spoons. So No! this bird can’t be an owl!
But one thing became transparent as I locked eyes with this bird, this ain’t no docile species! This is not the kind I can stickfeed with a birdseed-encrusted chunk of honey, or a slice of wonderbread. No, no, this bird looked like it just ate a whole meadow-patch of grasshoppers, or maybe two field mice on their way to the market, or the equivalent of its own weight in small birds!
I’ve never seen a bird like this up close, I felt the urge to hold it to make it stay longer. Its gaze was calm, and its countenance beautiful! I couldn’t help looking at its belly and it sure looked yummy — all dressed and ready for a feast! I felt that God has sent me a wonderful Christmas present, and I wished that everyday I received that present — and THEN! — as simply as the bird touched down outside my window, a thought enters my mind —
What if we all had a sort of bird post? What if — we all had perches outside our windows and birds can drop by during their seasonal migration and send us messages or tweats???
I mean, wouldn’t it be nice if once or twice a year, we got our messages this way? If instead of instant text or email or phone call, we can handwrite letters to friends in homemade inks, attach it to our carrier birds, let the words mature as the seasons turn, and then receive a reply in six-months-time???
I know what you’ll say.
Fat chance! eh?
But I sure miss this bird of prey.