It was a particularly cold December, the time of year when the days are short. The kind of relentless wind that slashes at bare skin rendering it raw and sore in a few short seconds.
The bitter cold lingered days into weeks. One would be forgiven if they stayed put - to stay huddled in their warm homes, snuggled under blankets, and occasionally peering out the bay window at the ice crystals forming in the frigid night air.
Early one evening, sitting by the warmth and glow of the fireplace there was a deep thud at the window. A startled glance towards the window revealed nothing but the distorted reflection of the hearth scenes.
Returning attention to the flames dancing in the fireplace and its gift of dancing flickers of light and heat, there was yet another peculiar thud at the window, and then another.
Rising from the comfort of the chair and to the window - and nothing to be seen except for the snow being whipped around as choreographed swirls on the drifted blanket of powdery flakes.
Perplexed, and bundling up in winter apparel to brave the bitter cold of the early evening to gain another perspective. Stepping into the cold air, greeted by winter's cruel embrace - the first breath of cold burns your lungs and runny snot freezes in your mustache.
A short walk reveals several, partially snow-covered lumps on the ground, just below the window. With each step, the scrunching sound of the dry snow adds to the cacophony of the howling wind.
After a few short steps, eyes peering through ice-laden eyelashes to discover three frozen birds, frozen-still. A shifting gaze from the frozen birds to the bay window, to clearly see the fire in the hearth, the recently vacated cozy chair and the steam still rising from a hot cup of tea.
A thought: Perhaps the birds too could see this scene, and longing to escape the bitter cold they thought they could fly in to share the gifts around the fireplace.
How sad they couldn’t see the glass. How sad they couldn’t understand what was between them and the warmth in front of them. But with a thud, they fall unconscious to the ground, succumbing to the frigid winter air.
“Silly birds” you mournfully lament. “Why can’t you see the glass?” How many more of you must perish this way?” Of course, birds are not to be reasoned with, begged or bargained with, and so with resignation to trudge back to the door to be greeted by the warmth. Doffing the layers of winter wear you utter a half breathed prayer -
“Oh Father, bless the birds. Surely, you know how to reach them so they stop killing themselves. How would you save them from themselves?”
In a pregnant pause between a breath, bubbling to the top of mind...
“I would become one of them.”