Janet's Jargon

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Sunday, February 25, 2007

It's so "tweet"

It was February in North Dakota, but it was a strange day. It was 5 o'clock in the morning--and it was raining! It doesn't rain in North Dakota in February.

About an hour later--after the automatic coffee was done perking--we got up, and as I went outside to get the newspaper, it was warm enough that I left the door open as I walked across the ramp to the mailbox to fetch the Grand Forks Herald. I was oblivious to the events that happened in that few seconds.

As we sat at the kitchen table, reading the paper and drinking our coffee, I suddenly spotted a little chickadee sitting on Ivan's desk. He didn't seem nervous or upset. He just sat and watched us.

But let me back up a little bit first.

I suppose the reason he (and yes, I was convinced this was a "he") wasn't afraid of us is because for many years we have fed the birds. At least that's the way it started. Soon our resident family of rabbits that have lived under the back shed for several generations began to join the feathered friends. They didn't argue; they all ate together in peace. After a bit, the squirrels came poking around, but they wouldn't touch the birdseed. Ivan decided we should add some nuts to the mixture. Well, I pretty much figured that between him and me there were already enough nuts around, but he got a bag of mixed nuts and put them down right with the birdseed. Again, they all gathered in unity, but the squirrels didn't have enough tooth power to crack the nuts. So, feeling sorry for them, Ivan got some salted peanuts. The squirrels had a grand old time with them, but they were not alone. The blue headed blackbirds (I mistakenly called them "crows" one time when a birdlover was visiting us) also liked the nuts. But, the birds would like the salt off the nuts, then scatter the nuts all over the yard, leaving the squirrels to work up an appetite by playing hide-and-seek for their supper.

Anyway, back to the rainy Feb. day and our friendly visitor. I went and got the broom, hoping to chase him towards the door, and once he got there I figured I could grab the door and open it and he would fly outside.

Wrong! The bird headed, calmly and gently, towards the bedrooms. I went back to find him and he flew over my head back to the kitchen, and he perched atop a high old antique oak cupboard. Ivan asked me why he would sit up there, and I said, "That's easy. He can get a birdseye view from up there."

I realized that the broom would probably scare him, so I went and opened the door and waited to see what he would do. He went back over to Ivan's computer and sat there for a bit, then he went to the organ, which is right beside the door. I was standing off just a little ways to the side of him. He perked his head first one way, then the other, as if to say, "Well, I guess you'll be all right in here." Then he hopped off the organ onto the floor and swaggered out the door. No, he didn't fly out. He was perfectly happy to walk out. As soon as he got outside, he sat on the ramp and looked back at me and let loose with one cute little "chick-a-dee-dee-dee" and then walked down the ramp and around to get his breakfast.

Babs Williams-Wood told me that to Native Americans a bird in the house is a sign of good luck for the coming year. In that case, 2007 should be a very good year!

Ivan wrote a poem about the event. Here it is, for your fun.

Tweety Bird
I saw a little Tweety bird
Who came into our house.
He went from room to room, unheard;
He was quiet as a mouse.

He circled places flying around
Without a single care,
Then went out to the ground
To our habitat, with care.

There he met his friend, the squirrel,
Then the rabbit, so very shy.
Then birdie friends came in a whirl
To join them from the sky.

They ate together ina patch
No bigger than a square,
Even in the snowy catch,
Filled with seeds and flair.

Seemed funny now to see,
Everyone agreed.
If only man could live
In harmony--with no greed.
-Ivan H. Smith, Feb. 2007


  • At 8:58 PM, Blogger JanetElaineSmith said…

    My apologies to my good friend, SisterBabs. It should be Babs (Barbara) Williamson-Wood.

  • At 9:07 PM, Blogger Star Publish said…

    Love the poem, Ivan. :)

  • At 9:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I love this story ,Janet, and Ivan's poem is the icing on the cake.

    Jay Hudson

  • At 9:34 PM, Anonymous bodrury said…

    I loved the poem and also the stories line you have written Janet. Looking forward to reading the books. Bo Drury

  • At 10:24 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Delightful! Heartwarming! Congrats to Ivan. The poem is wonderful. Will we be seeing more? Mayhap he will post to JWW.


  • At 6:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Nicely done, Ivan! Good job inviting the bird out :-), Janet. I didn't know about the good luck thing. Interesting.



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