The Westport countryside is wrapped in the dark cloak of night.
One solitary note breaks the stillness. The summer night rolls over for a few more minutes of silent repose.
The faintest hint of light glows from under the eastern horizon.
As if Mother Nature has sounded some diurnal alarm clock, the birds of the neighborhood seem to awaken in unison. Trees and bushes become the bleachers for choirs of songbirds to announce the dawning of another day.
Chipping sparrows, black capped chickadees, robins and their neighbors all vie for air space and proclaim territory.
A look out the window reveals that they are not yet in flight but are in some primordial process of waking up, perhaps their equivalent of brewing coffee before flying off to work in our lawns and fields, foraging for their food before returning to their perches at day’s end.
Soon we listeners will begin our own days, preparing our morning elixirs, going about our business, and returning later to our own nests. And probably envying what we see as the uncomplicated lives of our winged neighbors on this planet, wishing we, too, could be “free as a bird.”