Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Sad Circle of Life

The Circle of Life has rolled around my little nook in New Orleans.

I was in the back yard when I noticed something hanging in the bushes:

I maneuvered around to get a better look.  Let's linger on the gruesome details, shall we?  It's so rare for me to actually use the camera instead of just letting it take up space in my pocket.
Bluejays have been flitting around chez King recently and I now know why, besides the attractive surroundings, inviting atmosphere, and near-constant bossa nova soundtrack.  They have a nest.  One of their fledgelings escaped the nest and, unfortunately. met with misfortune, strangulated by a vine before he had a chance to hit the ground.

I disentangled the corpse and placed it on a bier of newspaper, exposed to the elements further back in the yard.  A Plains Indian funeral...
I was hoping, in a morbid way, that the worms and the scavengers would do their work and leave me with a bare, naked skeleton picked free of meat and gristle and even the brain.  I would walk back one day and find a bleached, museum quality specimen to mount in a shadow box.  So I walked back yesterday.  I didn't walk far when I discovered that everything might not be what I imagined.
A few steps further revealed a more ominous sign...
It was easy to deduct where the evidence would lead, especially since the lady of the house had mentioned that she heard some cats carrying on outside the bedroom window the night before.  The empty grave:
An old newspaper is as useless as the stale news it contains, good for lining bird cages or serving as the final resting place for adolescent birds who have met their maker too soon, before they have had a chance to soar.  An old newspaper is also good for wrapping fish.  Everyone knows cats love to eat fish and birds. I cannot fit a mouse into this poetry, but you get the idea.  There is a subtle serendipity to the events we witness.

The sun shone brightly and cheerfully, as if nothing out of the ordinary had happened.  If it had been raining, I would have cried, but I didn't want anyone to be able to tell how I felt inside.

I've had time to come to terms with the inevitable.  I'm of a philosophic turn of mind.  It is all the grand Circle of Life.  Hakuna matata as they say in the Lion King.  New Orleans is neither celluloid, nor a broadway place, nor an ice capade.  It is not Disney-fied.  It's real life, gritty and muddled at its core.  Sometimes sad things happen in the real world.

No comments:


Related Posts with Thumbnails