robin’s gift

Pulling weeds on my knees, collecting rocks and concrete pieces from the not-yet-a-garden, sweeping front stairs and drive, trimming daffodil stems, weeding rockery garden:  two hours and twenty minutes

Land-mine patrol poop pickup in the back yard followed by grooming and a bath for filthy dog:  forty minutes

Watching a robin lay an egg in her nest on our back porch:  timeless


When I got up Saturday morning, the sun streamed in the kitchen windows: do I pull weeds or relax with a book on the deck?  Given that next weekend will be spent at the SCBWI writers’ conference (yippee!), I sighed and turned to the weeds: pulling them now will save me time and effort later.

After too much nearly enough time on my knees (there are still weeds), I turned to tasks I could do standing up, to straighten out my creaky body.

As I tidied away my tools, imagining a cool drink sweating in my hand, I heard the tell-tale ploop and splash that meant Kaylah was in the stream.  When I called out her out, she collected mud, leaves, and seeds in her coat as she scrambled up the bank.

Thank you, dog-face.  Grumble, grumble.

And then the magic: robins have nested on top of the back porch light for several years now. For the last week or two, we’ve noticed them primping the nest for this year’s big event.

Mama Robin was there, but did not seem concerned about the grooming and bathing, so I carried on, knowing I had to maintain momentum if I was going to finish – this was a bent-over task I hadn’t planned on.

As I stood up to stretch, the robin caught my eye: she was facing the house, white hind-end facing the world, standing above the bowl of the nest.  It took me a minute to realize what I was looking at:  great round lumps under her feathers, sort of like the fuzzy ‘nads you’d see on an aggressive tomcat, but… bigger.

I was looking at eggs inside the robin.  And while I watched, she released an egg into her nest: one perfect robin’s-egg-blue egg.  Right in front of me.

Oh. My.


listening to: robins greeting the morning as the overnight rain lets up


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