Walking. It Ain’t Disney on the Sabbath.

5:50 a.m.

Go ahead, lip sync. I’ll wait.  362 consecutive days. Like in a Row. Morning walk @ Cove Island Park.

I can see her from the parking lot.  She’s up.  I rush to grab the camera gear, worried that she’s going to plop down again and I’ll miss the shot.

Yet, Something is off.

A raven approaches the nest with his shrill KRAA! KRAA! KRAA!

The male rushes towards it, hissing. Canadians, normally patient, and ever-courteous, can be pushed only so far.  Nasty black scavenger, steps back, offers a half-a**ed kraa! and takes watch from a distance. I look around for a stone to join in the defense. Lucky for you Ray, I didn’t find one.

Mother Goose, meanwhile continues to peck away at her nest.

There’s no sign of eggs.

No sign of little ones.

I wait.

And watch.

No eggs. No little ones.

She’s pecking, poking, arranging.  And then, she tugs and pulls on what appears to be a fetus, skin color, reddish orange.

I watch for a moment longer. And leave. Can’t watch this.

I walk up to the bridge, the entrance to the park.  Take another look from this vantage point. No eggs. No little ones. Maybe they’ll both be gone by the time I return. And some kind soul will sweep the remains of that hardscrabble nest into Long Island Sound.

I walk around the park, not anxious to return to the funeral, and return 30 minutes later.

She’s still poking at her nest. Odd.

The raven has departed, tired of waiting for a free meal.

Her mate is now sitting on the pier. Must be waiting for her to be done grieving so they can move on.

I cross the bridge. Still no sign of any eggs, or little ones. Ever the optimist DK.

I look away.  Sad, all of it. Heavy.

I get in the car, and turn up the heater. Cold? 53° F?  I can’t bear to keep looking at the scene.

I’m ready to back out of the parking lot, and take one last look. She’s still cleaning her empty nest. What is she doing? Strap on your zoom lens and let’s see what she’s poking at.

I turn off the ignition, and get out of the car.

Camera, super zoom lens affixed, I walk back out to the fence and zoom in on the target…

[Read more…]

And the show (still) MUST go on…


Mother Goose & Mate @ Cove Island Park. 6:28 a.m. Friday, April 23, 2021.

And the show MUST go on…


Mother Goose & Mate @ Cove Island Park. 6:29 a.m. Tuesday, April 20, 2021.

Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night…


133 pictures taken on my morning walk. And only THIS one stirs the soul.  Mother Goose @ Cove Island Park. 6:49 a.m. Saturday, April 17, 2021.

Miracle. All of it.

Some transfer of significance has occurred: I feel it, feel the air move, feel time begin to pour down a new tributary. The world adjusts itself. The doctors hold the baby up over the screen so that I can see her. She is livid and blue and her face is a rictus of shock and fear. I recognise her immediately from the scan. Only I knew the secret of her tranquillity, the floating world of her gestation. She is borne off to the far side of the room, away from me, and as if she were a light I fall deeper into shadow the further away she goes. The midwives crowd around her. I lose sight of her but her cries reach me like messages. Presently she emerges clothed and wrapped in a blanket. Her father takes her and holds her. His offers of friendship must suffice, must compensate for her lack of proper passage, for the clock of experience has started ticking and won’t wait for me. Her life has begun.

~ Rachel Cusk, ”A Life’s Work: On Becoming a Mother


Notes:

  • Rachel Cusk’s book was named #16 in The 50 Best Memoirs of the Past 50 Years by the The New York Times (June 26, 2019)
  • Post inspired by: “The boys don’t wear mittens anymore. Their feet are much bigger than mine… But I still miss their baby feet, and their patter, and the piffle of childhood. I reel at a baby’s cry. I swoon at strollers. I don’t understand why all the love songs aren’t about babies. ~ Jill Lepore, “The Lingering of Loss” in The New Yorker (July 1, 2019) (Thank you Sawsan)
  • Post title Inspired by Albert Einstein’s quote: “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”
  • Photo – Hand-in-Hand by J’ ose

Miracle. All of It.

“The hospital corridors were quiet, the midwife was quiet. She whispered—that’s how I remember it—that I needed to see the doctor and have an ultrasound. She helped me gather my things and sent us even farther down the corridor. I remember lying on the doctor’s examining table in a dark cubicle, only the ultrasound machine emitting light. I remember covering my face with my hands. After a while, the doctor touched my arm. “Look,” he said. My husband took my hand in his. The doctor pointed at the screen and moved his finger carefully around the sonogram, as though showing us a rare map, and then, because we couldn’t quite believe what we were seeing and what he was telling us, he turned up the sound so we could hear the steady beating of the heart…”

Linn Ullmann, ”Unquiet: A Novel” (W. W. Norton & Company, January 15, 2019)


Notes:

  • Photo of sonogram: Kim Pham
  • Related Posts: Miracle. All of it.
  • Inspiration: Inspired by Albert Einstein’s quote: “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”

Sunday Morning

baby-father

He said that after the third child, he told his wife, Enough! He felt too old to have any more, so he got a vasectomy. But in the years since, he’s had many moments of regret, because once the boys got a little older, he said he wanted it again—the experience of cradling an infant in his arms.

~ Sheila Heti, Motherhood: A Novel (Henry Holt and Co., May 1, 2018)


Photo: caz gordon with Father & 2 day old Son

Sunday Morning

“We all come into existence as a single cell, smaller than a speck of dust. Much smaller. Divide. Multiply. Add and subtract. Matter changes hands, atoms flow in and out, molecules pivot, proteins stitch together, mitochondria send out their oxidative dictates; we begin as a microscopic electrical swarm. The lungs the brain the heart. Forty weeks later, six trillion cells get crushed in the vise of our mother’s birth canal and we howl. Then the world starts in on us.”

~ Anthony Doerr, All the Light We Cannot See


Photo: Nacia Photography

we bought den lille shoes

“Why didn’t you adopt a child?”

“We pursued it, certainly. And twice came close—people gave us baby clothes, the bed with sides, we bought den lille shoes. But both times fell to pieces. A mother can change her mind, you see? But to come so near—and then not. The disappointment is extravagant.” This he stated in a flattened voice like a wall built hastily to conceal ruins.

~ Leif Enger, Virgil Wander (Atlantic Monthly Press, October 2, 2018)

 


Notes:

Miracle. All of it.

“You’re doing great, Nicole,” Jenny said suddenly, and these seemed like the first clear words I had heard in hours. “One, maybe two more pushes and she’ll be born!” It was the most powerful moment of my life, that moment shortly after one in the morning when I heard her cry and knew she was finally with us. Our daughter decided to come into the world with one fist raised. Seconds later she was placed on my chest, beautiful and flushed and still screaming at the shock of birth, and I touched her hair, her warm little cheek. Her skin felt impossibly soft, softer than I knew anything could be. At seven pounds, fifteen ounces, twenty inches long, she was not a small baby—her wails were also lusty, much louder than I’d expected—but she felt new and fragile in my arms. She stopped crying and gazed up at me, and my world shrank to the arresting dark blue pools of her eyes…

I had never been so tired, and I was sore to the very roots of my hair, but I couldn’t seem to close my eyes—how could anyone expect me to sleep when I had this fascinating little face to watch? It was almost impossible to believe this was the same unseen being who’d done jumping jacks on my bladder, greeting me with kicks and pokes and slow stretches for weeks on end. She was so small and so new, barely and yet wholly herself, already…

Suddenly I remembered the words of a friend…I love telling my kids their birth stories. It’s such a privilege to be able to do that. Yes, I thought, and also a miracle. The clichéd word didn’t embarrass me; this day and night was a wonder I’d never get over. As many times as this had happened before, to billions of parents since time immemorial, it was the only time it had ever happened to me. I had a child now, and she was mine. We were together. We would stay together. When Abby was old enough to ask me—to wonder, and to listen, and to care—I would tell her about her birth, her first days with us. You were born with one arm raised…I would say. When it was over, you and Daddy slept, but I couldn’t. All I wanted to do was look at you.

~ Nicole Chung, “All You Can Ever Know: A Memoir” (October 2, 2018)


Notes:

  • Photograph Credit
  • Related Posts: Miracle. All of it.
  • Inspiration: Inspired by Albert Einstein’s quote: “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”
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