It’s a cold gray day here in Texas, and I needed something cheery, so I put on last year’s Christmas mix cd that I made, an entire cd of women singing Christmas songs, and forwarded to this lovely non-soprano, belty version of O Holy Night. I was singing along, rocking the proverbial rafters, waiting for my tea kettle to commence whistling, when a flash of color outside caught my eye.
I turned toward it, and was caught, breathless, watching a pair of cardinals feeding from the tray of wild bird food we keep on the picnic table (with a smaller table positioned over it as a concession to weather. The female was eating, the male, in his crimson glory, was perched on the top table, guarding her and waiting his turn.
I watched at the window, and he turned as if he could see through the glass and mesh and see me. For a heart-beat it seemed as if we communicated, and then the female left, and he moved down to the food, sampled a few seeds, looked toward me once more, nodded his little bird head, and disappeared.
Only after that did I think, “Damn, I should have grabbed the camera.”