Birds in bed
We went walking one evening last week, at twilight. It's been so hot and seven o'clock brings little relief from a tired sun and fiery asphalt so we wait until twilight.
I heard rustling in the trees overhead and when I looked up I counted four cardinals primping and preening on a branch. I started to look up in the trees as we walked and noticed how all the birds were ending their day by finding a branch and settling in for the night together in groups of four or more. I have never caught this happening before, seeing birds cuddling up in trees for the night. I've only caught them...gone for the day. I made a note of the time to catch them again.
We stopped under the giant fig tree in the neighborhood, hoping for a snack. The figs were gone, new fruit was on its way and would be ready in three weeks or so. There was a group of blue jays accommodating themselves. I told August if we wanted figs, those birds would be the ones to ask. August told them good night and we went on our way.
We caught familiar scents in the air, onions sautéing, tomato sauce, bar-b-que. Dog walkers were coming out, joggers going home. We passed the sad park with broken playscapes. The sun finally made its exit but the sidewalk continued its fiery echo. We walked home excited that we saw birds getting into bed.