4/22/09

Pascha Morning



I’m always thankful for Orthodox Holy Week and Pascha (aka Easter; Pascha is the Greek translation of the Hebrew pesach; both mean Passover, which is so appropriate). Amazingly, we have passed through them already, after our journey through Lent. I am thankful for the quietness of Holy Week and the opportunity to focus particularly on the foundation of our faith; I am thankful for the exuberant joy of Pascha as we celebrate the Feast of Feasts, the Resurrection of our Lord, the harrowing of Hell. Pascha is the only night of the year where I’ll stay up until 4 a.m., celebrating the Liturgy and then a potluck with our church family. It is a joyous time.

Early Pascha morning, I found myself chasing off death in the form of the neighbor’s black cat, who’d ventured into our yard to try to rob the mockingbird nest. I was awoken by the cat screeching as the parent birds showed their anger, so I quickly dressed and ran outside in the dark to chase the cat off. With a flashlight, I spent the next 45 minutes looking for the baby birds. I am happy to report that I found them, darling little fledglings who were not quite ready to fly but close to it. I held one in my hand after I caught him; he gazed at me with his dark eyes with solemnity, his beak and legs much larger than I’d expected. In fact, his little feet wrapped tightly around my fingers. It was quite touching. I put him back in the nest, which was built in our lovely jasmine vines right near the bedroom windows. The other one escaped me and ran into the thick nandina bushes. They peeped their pitiful distress calls and cried all morning, and eventually their parents started feeding them again. I even called a wildlife refuge center in case we needed to take them in. I humbled myself the next day by walking into a dog salon and asking for a bag of dog hair to spread along my fence line to keep the cats out. They seemed to think it would work. My own dog endured many hits in his rear end from the adult birds; it was actually very funny to see his surprise and shock each time; of course he was not injured. I am so happy to report that the baby birds are now up in the trees, not adept fliers but at least gaining competence. So far, the story has a happy ending.

9 comments:

Letters From Midlife said...

I love your account about the birds. I was so happy a few years ago to discover that it really is ok to put a baby bird back in it's nest. The old school of thought was that the parents would reject it if a human touched it.

Enjoy your passover and Holy week.

elizabeth said...

Blessed Bright Week! Beautiful description! I hope the birds flourish.

DebD said...

what a lovely ending. Enjoy the rest of Bright Week.

Aunt Amelia's Attic said...

OT, but I just saw your blog name, in a comment in 'Letters From Midlife' blog... And it is soooooooooo pretty - "Meadowlark Days" - that I had to pop over and tell you this. :-)

Just the sound of your blog name, lifts my spirits!

'Aunt Amelia'

Pres. Kathy said...

Christ is Risen! I received your cards in the mail yesterday - they are beautiful!!

Mimi said...

Christ is Risen! I agree, beautiful Bright Week indeed.1

peaceliving said...

I really enjoy reading about how you celebrate holy week. It's lovely that there are so many ways to honor christian tradition.

Marfa said...

Christ is Risen! Is that phlox? Our phlox are just emerging, no buds or flowers yet!

Meadowlark Days said...

Martha - those are pink jasmine - but they do look like phlox! Cindy, I later looked online and it said I should have worn gloves when handling the baby birds so my scent wouldn't attract predators, but it worked out so far!