Thursday, April 06, 2006

Who Is She?

Someone asked her yesterday who she was. Who "she" was. There was silence for awhile. Now, here's a lesson from The Facts of Life: A really close friend, someone who is almost a part of you, can sit silently on the other end of the phone line without giving up and hanging up. She can sit there in dead silence, doing her toenails, watching a muted soap opera on TV for a half-hour at a time while you struggle with an answer or while you cry so hard you are no longer able to take a deep breath, much less speak words.

But someone asked her yesterday who she was and there was no answer until this morning when she sat up in bed when the 5:00 mockingbird alarm sang her awake, even in the midst of a pouring rain, and realized who she was.

She is a mockingbird. She can sing everyone's songs but has none of her own.

She has a friend like herself, and they are always alert to finding where they belong before it is too late, before all the best spots are taken. They are like puzzle pieces that have had the tabs bent so when they are put into a place in the puzzle where they should fit, they upset the smooth surface of the finished product just a bit.

She is a mockingbird, moving around, learning new songs, rippling the surface, always returning to the same tree in the Spring alone, happy to be singing someone else's songs from the safety of a familiar branch.

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