I’ve always wanted to speak
to the smaller birds, so
I’ve done a lot of weird whistling
Sometimes a little birdie cocks her head
and tries to see if I’m a threat or a bird benevolent,
but I’m neither a mate nor predator, just
So I whistle something which means
“give tomatoes to Owls, like Caesar.”
And she says, “Huh, what? And
for a Human you don’t look so bad
even though you have no feathers.
Why is it that you can’t fly?
It’s so easy.”
And I said, “Why is it that
you can’t speak and write novels.”
“Well, then,” it said, “have you written one lately?”
And I said, “Um, no…”
And it said in a way that I think it meant kindly that
I was a birdbrain.
Books by Douglas Gilbert