Sunday Morning (So Help Us God)

The Arctic tern has the longest migration of any animal. It flies from the Arctic all the way to the Antarctic, and then back again within a year. This is an extraordinarily long flight for a bird its size. And because the terns live to be thirty or so, the distance they will travel over the course of their lives is the equivalent of flying to the moon and back three times…

(They) ask questions about the birds. How do they know where to go? Why do they fly so far? Why are they the last, why these ones, what makes them luckier than the others? I don’t know the answers, not really, but I do my best and, anyway, it’s not really answers they want, it’s simply remembering what it feels like to love creatures that aren’t human. A nameless sadness, the fading away of the birds. The fading away of the animals. How lonely it will be here, when it’s just us.

Charlotte McConaghy, Migrations: A Novel (Flatiron Books, August 4, 2020)


Photo: Phil Gower of an Arctic Tern

Comments

  1. nature over all logic.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The last line lingers. In times of pandemic, nature may yet prevail. May Humanity wake up to the damage we are doing.🙏

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The resurgence of many forms of wildlife has been a silver lining in this pandemic cloud. Hoping against hope we pick up the clue phone while there’s still time. And this terns? Amazing! Can you imagine the calorie burn for that round trip? 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  4. that is one impressive bird!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Elegant!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. A nameless sadness, the fading away of the birds. The fading away of the animals. How lonely it will be here, when it’s just us.
    You know, it just hit me like a hammer: I think I’d actually prefer it to be the other way round. The fading of humans. How lovely it will be here, when it’s just nature, animals, vegetation. I’m pretty fed up with humans right now – not in my small circle of family and friends. But as a whole…. there is so much sh.t going on, I just don’t wanna be part of all of this any more.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. So lonely 😔

    Liked by 1 person

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