You are Free, Little Bird

A dream I had about a woman and her gift-birds.

Eight turquoise birds happily climbed into a birdcage. A woman received the birds as a gift in exchange for her labors. She admired her pretty birds and smiled. At the bottom of the cage, she noticed a small black bird. The bird was more round than the other eight and had an angular tail with blue undertones. The woman did not remember receiving the little bird. The black bird had been there, in the cage, all along.

As the days went by, all of the birds would sit on the high perch together, observing the world outside. The turquoise birds would sometimes creep up next to the black bird, peck it, then return to their place. The black bird would stare at the outside world more than the others. He would get as close to the door as he could, take a few sips from the water bowl, and return to staring at the outside world. He was separate from the social circles within the cage.

The woman observed the birds behavior for several weeks, and promised to herself that she’d set the little black bird free one day. As soon as she made that promise to herself, she couldn’t wait a day longer. That evening, she took the cage and traveled to the edge of the cliff. The woman did so with a heavy heart, for she loved her black bird. The sun was low, and the sky was bright orange and red. The little black bird waited patiently by the door of the cage.

The woman slid the cage door open, just enough for the little bird to pass through. He stumbled out and flew into the sunset. The turquoise birds sat still, watching the scene.

The woman had tears in her eyes and, said in her heart, “Now, you are free.”

The little bird and the woman never looked back.


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