July 20 – Bluer Than Robin’s Eggs

by Ariela Zucker

“As I remember your eyes,
Were bluer than robin’s eggs.” Joan Baez – Diamond and Rust.

RobinsEgg-ArielaZuckerI watched them for almost three weeks, a couple of robins building their nest. They flew around the front yard for a while. Checked the grassy lawn for its offering of forage. Perhaps consulted with the hummingbirds who inhabited of the lawn for many years, and finally decided to construct the nest in the bush right next to the deck. The bush that I neglected to prune and is now hovering over the drive.

Every morning with my first cup of coffee I would sit, and watch fascinated how they were flying back and forth each time with a new trophy; a blue thread, a twig, a dead leaf, stopping occasionally to chat, while resting on the arch that holds my Dutch Trumpet’s vine.

I was a bit worried about their choice of location, at the tip of the bush, on a rather low branch. Constructing the nest at the section of the bush that seemed fragile, unstable in the wind and easily seen from the front drive. But I calmed myself thinking that they have generations of instincts guiding them so who am I to judge. It was nice to be able to see, from my seat on the deck how the nest grows and forms with each day and becomes an elaborate creation to hug and protect the eggs and then the newborn birds.

But this morning, on the deck a blue egg, fractured is the first thing that caught my eyes. It laid half-open on the floor with its insides oozing out. I knew right then and there that my worries were justified; this was not a good place, not a safe location at all. For a few minutes, I was consumed by sadness and anger.I was surprised by my reaction. Only a broken robin’s egg, I kept telling myself, not a big deal. Light blue, the kind of blue robin eggs are known for. Blue for happiness and rebirth, in this case, became the death of a hope.

I found myself mourning the loss of one blue robin egg, the death of a future bird. Perhaps in a world full of misery, and anger, it is the simple daily things that in the end get us.

Ariela Zucker was born in Israel. She and her husband left sixteen years ago and now reside in Ellsworth Maine where they run a Mom and Pop motel. This post originally appeared on her blog at Paper Dragon.

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4 responses to “July 20 – Bluer Than Robin’s Eggs

  1. As a lover of the woods and the birds who nested in the trees I could resonate with your story. I am just wondering though if the death of that robin gave you permission to grieve other deaths that you have experienced.

  2. The mystery of nature has always fascinated me.

    I was struck by your last line; I don’t view the world in the same way. Yes, they both exist … yet … yet … yet there is so much goodness and hope.

    Thank you for the photos. Interestingly enough, although I have heard the colour description “Robyn Eggs Blue”, I had never seen the real thing!

  3. Ariela–I’ve had similar twinges of sadness when something within nature dies–a bird, one of the flowering shrubs in our yard, or the trees that construction workers recently cleared from land near my home. I felt the grief for what could’ve been, saddened somehow by it all. Thanks for sharing your words. 🙂

  4. I mourn with you, Ariela. Thank you for this lovely piece.

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