We are lucky enough to live in an area full of birds and birdsong. On the first night we slept in this house I was delighted and filled with such an overwhelming sense of luck when I woke up to sunlight filtering through the bedroom window and the chorus of morning birdsong. Our previous flat had been close to a highway and morning brought nothing but the sound of traffic and stamping from neighbouring flats.
Over the five years we have lived in this house, I have learnt more about birds and their ways simply by observation. I have watched them from our back deck and seen them in our front yard. I have watched them fly across the horizon and flit this way and that throughout the days. I have welcomed them into our yard and watched some honey eaters get to know a new gum that popped up out of no where a few years ago.
Lately, we have had Currawongs in our front yard. One particular Currawong has been coming right up to our window every morning while we eat breakfast, as if to say hello, how do you do. The girls adore him and we all have to stop a moment to have a chat and a good morning to you. We call him Mr Currawong.
We were out in the yard a few days ago and found one of Mr Currawong’s feathers beneath where he greets us each day. We took it inside with some flowers and put it on our nature shelf. Since the discovery of the feather, we haven’t seen Mr Currawong. Each morning we watch and wait. We heard a Currawong call yesterday but did not sight the bird.
And so we hold onto this precious gift, and whether or not the falling out, placement and discovery of the feather was a matter of fluke, we accept it as an acknowledgement and a farewell.