I was recently traumatized by a demon death bird from hell and because I hate to sit with these horrors alone, I thought I’d share with you. Like a form of bloggy Trauma Bonding.
My son and I were in the backyard the other day raking an area that had become overgrown with weeds so I could convert it to a garden bed area to cover the shithole weeds and random bits of broken glass that apparently linger just below the surface of the soil in my entire yard. Because it seems that someone built our house on what appears to be a mason jar factory that exploded (it’s the only explanation I can come up with) and instead of cleaning up the many broken jars they just put sod over it like they were playing the worst practical joke in history. Anyway, we were raking and at some point I heard baby birds chirping and I looked up and saw a cute little grass and twig nest in the rain gutter of our shed.
“Awe, look Little! A nest with baby birds! Right there! So cute!” And I picked up my toddler and showed him the nest and we listened to the adorable little chirp chirp chirps. He asked me what kind of bird it was and I said “I think a Finch” and he seemed satisfied with that so we went back to raking. The sun warmed my back, I had one air bud in and was half -listening to a nice book on Boundaries, and watching my tot pull dandelions. The day was good, and then the shrieking started.
I heard a god-awful shriek over my audio-book and my head jerked towards the sound where I saw the Finch parents flapping around frantically and squawking. They seemed distressed so I thought, hmm, a cat in the area maybe? But a cat can never get up there, so they’ll be fine, right? My son had put down his shovel at this point and was searching for the commotion. Then, some blue tail feathers popped out from the gutter where the nest was and I thought, huh, that’s weird. Then a big blue body, and finally the head of a Scrub Jay with a tiny, bald, pink, baby Finch clamped in its demon beak. I gasped and covered my mouth with my hands. My Little turned towards me, thank the universe, to ask “What’s wrong mommy?” And right then the murder Jay ate the baby bird in one awful crunchy screaming bite, then flew away. I was shocked and horrified because even though I know that the world is full of terrible things, I didn’t expect to witness it in my goddamn garden.
The finch parents were hysterical. The remaining baby birds chirped for their lives. My Little was still asking me what the hell was going on. And then, perched on the power line like the sociopath that it is, I spotted the Demon Jay. It dove towards the nest and I jumped around with my arms high in the air and yelled “No you son of a bitch!” then I picked up a handful of dirt and threw it towards the Jay (to scare it, not hurt it). That mother fucker was not phased at all and I helplessly watched as it went straight into the nest where it stayed until the squeaks stopped and my yard fell silent. Thankfully, my Little was more interested in why I threw dirt, (for which I replied, “There was a mean bird but it’s gone now”–Because WTF else is there to say?) than what was happening with the birds, so he didn’t seem to understand what had happened (thankfully).
I didn’t do yard work for a few days because the sound of healthy and hungry baby birds chirping was gone. The Finch parents were long gone, taking their grief elsewhere. A reminder of the fragility of living things.