Friday, 5 June 2015

Fly Away Home


                           Y A Y  THE   SWALLOWS   ARE   BACK

In the summer, when i  lived on my  beloved Holy  Island,  swallows  would sit on the telephone wires and  washing line outside my bedroom window and wibble, warble  their amazing song.   the first serenade of the morning and  the last lullaby of the night.  i could lie back on my pillows and watch them weaving and swerving,  flying like jet fighters and singing like angels.   a pair would nest in my  outhouse swooping in and out with beaks full of bugs for their babes,  totally oblivious of the cats,  aware that when on the wing nothing with fur had a chance.   

One year i just happened to lean in, to see how much gas was left in the calor gas tanks, as the littlies fledged.    four of them leaped from the nest and  launched  themselves upwards, grazing my left ear with their wings.   three caught an updraft and, shepherded by parents, made a safe, soft landing in a tree.    the fourth lost the plot, and all confidence, and skidded, tumbling over and over feathers and feet flailing coming to a hard halt on the concrete path.   
 

Aware of two furry beasties pricking up ears, extending whiskers  showing a healthy interest in swallow casserole i scooped the tiny bundle up in cupped hands and hurled him, down wind, as high into the air as i could manage.    for a heart stopping moment he stuttered and started to fall.   the cats followed him with eyes fully dilated, muscles stretching into pounce mode.    i held my breath and willed him to swoop,  "swipe wings,  buddy, do SOMETHING."    just as it seemed he was doomed to be feline flambe an updraft caught him and,  mummy and daddy on either side, he made a valiant effort and  landed beside his siblings on a branch.     whiskers drooped, dribble dried, pupils closed, cats decided meals on wings were a no go so might as well go back to slumber land.

This morning i half woke at dawn to a familiar sound in an unfamiliar setting.   a loooooooong burbling followed by an inward gulp.......and........burble wibble warble on and on and on...........ah yes..........the swallows are back and they've found the telephone wires outside my Hexham bedroom window..........some things never change............nice isn't it.


3 comments:

  1. Swallow saviour jeni and swallowed pride of cats! No swallow stew for them that day !! ??

    ReplyDelete
  2. How lovely.....Do you think they followed you there cause you saved the baby !!!!! Val X

    ReplyDelete
  3. wouldn't that be a nice thought. it would have to be their great grandchildren though

    ReplyDelete