Every morning I get up and drink my coffee by the window and watch the sun come up. Birds fly up from the trees across the way. They are mostly pigeons and grackles, city street scavengers, and I just see them in sort of an abstract way as shapes against the sky.
The only sound besides their scrawking is the occasional motor of a central air conditioning unit running downstairs behind the building. So it’s usually a squawk or a mechanical hum and that’s it for a morning concert and I kind of tune it out. But this morning as I sat there, sipping my coffee, my mind innocent from sleep, one bird flew over and I heard . . . the sound of a bird’s wings flapping – the sound of a bird’s wings flapping! It was so amazing. Flap, flap, flap, flap. No other sound. Just flap, flap, flap.
I have never from that window heard that sound – of the thousands of birds that I’ve watched fly over every morning as I have sat there for 2 1/2 years. Suddenly there was a pause in the squawk and the hum and there it was – the sound of one bird flapping . . .