11 May The True Size of a Bird
A BLACK BIRD the size of my hand hops between the rusting iron gates. It considers, steadies, and leaps.
The black bird swoops upon a red-tiled roof that wears the guise of abandonment.
Perhaps by people, but not by creatures with two wings, for roofs like these lacking a congruent ceiling make for an aviary lacking rules; this bird knows.
It comes, it goes as it pleases.
The black bird softly lands and looks upon the dusky city.
The bird is free. I wonder if it has a home.
A special tree or lofty nook to rest after a taxing flight. Guided by my heart, I feel that I must move. I don’t want to leave this place, but maybe I’ll be back one day.
This bird, perhaps it’s guided too — not by a calling, a need to explore each city’s depth and history — but by something natural, ancient, healing too; the coastal wind, which tells it when to leap, to take a chance and freefall.
I feel at home, because maybe I am. Perhaps like this bird, no matter where we go, we’re home. We make it home. We find our nook in the recesses of our soul, despite what our surroundings give us.
The bird could fit inside my shoe; yet perhaps it knows more of what the world contains than I, for it’s not its size which determines its potential, but how high it’s willing to climb.
Regardless of our history, the hand that we’ve been dealt, we look upon the city with the same valiant gaze, inspired by this fearless bird to take a step through iron gates.
I wonder if it knows its home, or that it is in Lisbon.
It flies above the capital of a once commanding empire; now a splatter of pastel paint on concrete rock, a violin, echoing in the void of space.
Portugal’s a place of peace; its colors, spread around the world, replace the ships that left these shores.
This bird, as noble as a long-gone king, inspires not by sitting back, but by looking up, looking forward, and taking flight.