I found this delicate little bird’s nest last week, lying in the yard under one of the Willow Oaks. I say “found”, but it really seemed as though it was placed there for me to see. Such a tiny little work of art, with a tiny little oak leaf laying perfectly along the bottom, the entire inside lined with Ricky’s fur.
Ricky left more than his fair share of German Shepherd fur strewn about the house and the yard during shedding season. After he died this summer, I gathered and scattered the fur he left behind on his bed. I dropped some under the Apple Tree, where he loved to pick up apples and eat them. I scattered some under the Maple Tree, where we laid him in the shade when he couldn’t walk anymore. I scattered some among the Creeping Phlox, where we would find him laying amongst the lavender flowers, even though I would grumble and scold him for crushing my treasured “purple flowers”. He would turn his ears and look away, as if to say, “Mission accomplished! You’re here, standing beside me, paying attention to me. That’s all I ever wanted.”
I held some up in the palm of my hand, at twilight, and let the breeze take it.
And now, in late October, two weeks after the remains of Hurricane Michael blew through and tossed trees and limbs to the ground, this tiny nest is resting, intact, on the grass, as if it just fluttered down from its perch in the tree. Carefully and lovingly crafted by a mother and perhaps a father to be a snug, cozy cradle for their little ones. Did the tears flow when I picked it up and realized what was in it? Oh yes, they did. And then I smiled. Remembering Ricky. 💖