May 6 – Twig and Nest – Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening

“I think I could turn and live with animals. They do not sweat and whine about their condition. Not one is dissatisfied.” Walt Whitman

It was a very small thing, watching a robin carry a twig too big for its nest. It tried once, then twice, to use it, and somehow, with its very small bird brain, it knew it was no good. It simply flew off and picked another.

I went and found the twig. There wasn’t a mark on it. I rolled it in my hand and thought of all the times I’ve laboured, trying to make things too big fit. So often what we want is like that twig, too big to be of use, and we stay lodged in an unhappiness created by holding on to something that can’t complete our nest.

It was humbling to watch the small bird work, singing as it went, leaving what it couldn’t use as it found it. If we could only treat each other with such simple kindness.

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