Virginia Barton

16 January 2016: Early Birds


16 January 2016


If I make my tea at one, three, or five in the morning it makes no difference, the bird is chirruping outside the kitchen window. He must be an insomniac.

Whoever heard of a bird singing in the middle of the night? Or perhaps he’s dreaming? Yes, there are security lights not far off, the bane of the bird-world, but he is the only wakeful one — not a whole chorus.

It’s very comforting to have a friend, specially a feathered one, awake at the same time as oneself when stumbling about slopping tea and trying not to sneeze and wake BH.

No one seems to hear my friend, but no one else is awake. I’m afraid I’ve called him Tweety (without the Pie), one’s imagination at 3 o’clock in the morning being sluggish.

Don’t mention slugs to Tweety — perhaps that’s what he’s on the lookout for? Are they nocturnal? Slugs, that is.

Has anyone any idea what type of bird this might be? As soon as it’s light he falls silent.

harpy_eagle_thumbWhen the Ghost exits in the first scene of Hamlet, Marcellus tells Horatio of the “…bird of dawning singeth all night long…” A bird that both announces the birth of the Saviour and warns ill-doers to keep away. A happy reminder for we early risers.

Because it’s dark I’ve never seen Tweety; but his song, thankfully, is not the call of the Harpy Eagle!




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