Many of us look at birds flying in the sky with the lingering desire to be as free as they are up there in the sky. I certainly did for a while; until I began to actually see them. At that point all sorts of questions started to populate my mind: Are birds actually that free? Do I care to know? Do I rather keep this precious metaphor as an escape from a life I may not wish to take responsibility for even if I created it for myself?
I took this photo of a juvenile wood pigeon on its very first day on the ground. Juvenile birds tend to spend some time there until their feathers and wing muscles are developed enough so they can take off and fly. His parents have chosen my garden for their home. I believe they have been doing so for many years now so I can only suspect that they have been rather successful creating their lives in my neighbourhood. They must have found this place perfect for their needs: feeding, courting, mating, raising their offsprings, keeping safe from predators to name just a few of those events that are also part of a bird’s life.
Unlike its brother, this juvenile never made it to the sky, it was attacked by a hawk that very same day it landed on the ground. It was as free as it was vulnerable. I guess all I am saying is that life is difficult and freedom often far from reach, even for the birds that we consider so free as they fly so high in the sky. But life is also full of magic if we see all that surrounds us for what it truly is. This beautiful bird brought magic to mine each day as I saw it growing up in the safety of its nest.