Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Last night I was at chapel when the chaplain turned a chair from up front around backwards toward the few of us in the crowd, straddled it like a cowboy getting ready to chaw and spit, and she made the comment, "I don't know how to explain this. I'm just tired of explaining things in terms of God and would like to find another way to present this stuff." She lost me, I got bored and thought, this is unreal and started to look in the rafters. I wondered if she saw that bird that was sitting up there. Dark body, tannish dirty looking feathers plumed from it's head, wings at it's side slowly shuffling itself closer to the wall. I wondered how it even got into the chapel in the first place? It wasn't making any noise as it moved and I seemed to be the only person who noticed it even though the kids were not paying any attention while the chaplain sat astride the chair, head resting in the palm of her hand looking confused and frustrated.

Then the boy next to me nudged me and said, "What kind of bird is that?". I looked again and it was getting larger, and its feathers were wet against its larger clumsy brown body. It was crawling along the beam against the wall, nearer to me when I noticed it was a pelican chick. A large pelican chick that had just hatched and was working it's way over to me with it's outstretched wings reaching and pulling itself ever closer. No one else seemed to notice but it was curious and sort of coddling against me now, warm, friendly, drying. I noticed two others in a nest behind an upright beam I hadn't noticed before. I watched them for the rest of chapel and befriended the first chick that had worked it's way over to me.

We didn't actually have chapel yesterday, we have it today.

I don't know what the pelican was all about.


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