“Do you know," Peter asked, "why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the stories.” ~ J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan


Where Will the Birds Dream?

See that hole?

A birdhole.
The image is not to scale -
the birdhole I photographed up close,
the wall back a bit.

I used to see it from my couch, that birdhole. This couch that looks out onto the neighborhood, that looks straight down Mary's driveway where she used to very badly back her car out over the curb and almost into the telephone pole and once tore the passenger side mirror off against the iron railing next to her porch - there were teeny mirrored pieces on the driveway for weeks and probably some still there if I closely looked. This couch looks down that straight-as-an-Oklahoma-highway driveway which separates her front yard from AC's backyard, and from this couch I watch AC's tulip tree bloom each spring, I watch the paperwhites and lilies make their way through the ground, and until last week I watched birds go in and out of that birdhole that AC didn't even know was there, on the way-back side wall of his house, until he had some boards replaced and the board with this hole came down. I sat here at lunch one day and watched the carpenter take it down, watched him toss the years and years of birds' nests out onto the ground and it was another sad change in a year full of sad changes and I walked over and asked if he would drill another hole for the birds, but no, no doing, and so a new board took its place and was painted, and I wonder what the birds will think when they show up to make their new home come spring and there is no way in.

Me no tengo home.
me sometimes too


  1. we currently have a woodpecker attacking our cottage....one has made a hole almost all the way through a column holding up our porch....

    little devil woodpeckers I tell you....

  2. Oh. I hadn't thought of that. The birds who nested behind this board weren't woodpeckers - they were tiny little birds - wrens maybe. The woodpeckers seem to love the hackberry tree out front and the pecan, but maybe they will drill a hole in the board for the other birds! LOL!

    :) Debi

  3. ah poor little birds. i love that you wanted to drill another hole for them.

  4. the way you intertwined "changes" in this story is so touching debi, I could in vision the sights from the couch...and the feelings as well.

    tulip trees are so magical..."straight as OK highway"...yes!!

  5. You know, I have been reading your blog long enough now that I quietly mourn these little tiny losses with you.


  6. jamie's comment is sooo sweet :) i understand her sentiment too. i love the swallows that seek out the small (often way too small) holes as though they are desperate for a place to rest their wings from the soaring acrobatics they engage in for hours at a time. they do this yearly at the neighbors house that borders ours on the east. i remember one year while my dad was visiting having him totter up a ladder in an effort to place a box with a hole the size of a swallow up against the house so i could offer them a place of their own. it made me sad to watch them continue their fruitless efforts over at the neighbors house leaving that new home empty and cold. i think it was like the were having a flesh memory. unable to let go of an ancient nesting place. they couldn't help themselves.

    love your words as always.


  7. I love your sensitivity. I hate to mess with nature also. We currently have several bats that come and go out of our eves. We never use our attic and so I haven't done anything about them. I guess I should check to make sure there isn't a real mess up there. Anyway, I also had a very fat tode in the same side of our home that I was going to buy a tode house on Etsy for but then my daughter ran over him in the car. We were so sad. Hopefully the birds will find a new home quick when they come back!

  8. I read this and I just keep thinking, change is hard. Too hard, really.


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