Paying Attention

This spring I decided to begin a practice of bird watching.

The spot where I sip my coffee and pray in the morning has an expansive view of the front yard, so I figured I’d start there. I bought a bird feeder and hung it, with great expectation. For a day or two nothing changed as I waited, and I watched. Since “nothing was happening” I looked at the tree where the feeder hung, and used our old Field Guide to identify it. When the squirrels came before the birds did, my mom was the one to suggest safflower seed. Following her advice quickly eliminated the “Advance of the Crazy Squirrels”. In the absence of any birds, I studied the brown yard. I could hear the birds, but couldn’t see them yet: my ears couldn’t differentiate between a tweet, a tweedle or a trill. But then suddenly, movement on the ground caught my eye. Mourning Doves! The gentle coo was immensely satisfying as what I heard confirmed what I saw.

Read the rest of the post over at Epiphany New England (a great site for resources on spiritual direction).

Lots of pine cones, no birds…at first glance.

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