They aren’t flying.
They are just sitting at the end of the driveway in a little forlorn huddle, about ten of them.
No more darting and diving in front of the porch. No more shameless displays of acrobatic somersaults. Ten swallows just sitting in deep contemplation at the end of my driveway staring at the sky.
Will they leave today? Will they linger a little while longer?
I sat motionless on the porch and hoped they would stay. These little friends have brought me such joy every morning. If I ever woke with night burdens still pulsing it only took a visit to the morning porch to reassure me. They always greeted me with chirps and drive by wing salutes to awaken my heart to the possibilities of a new day.
It hurts to see them motionless at the road’s edge as if somehow childhood was slipping away and the long flight to somewhere haunted them.
Couldn’t they stay a little longer carefree and young? Does it have to change?
There is sadness in the air today, an anxious anticipation of a farewell that I don’t think I can avoid. Still, they linger in the distance staring off into the mystery.
They’re coming this way slipping happily under the porch to their mud huts. I hear singing again!
The morning sun is now above the distant marsh pines, and I am happy.
I always hated goodbyes.
David R. Denny 2018