Character in a Thing So Small

In the icy morning chill a mountain bluebird flew into a field. It landed on a small tree, not more than a foot high, barren of leaves, its one twig-like branch powdered with snow. The bird perched, looking about, turning its head. It was dark blue against the white, open field. Beyond the field was the forest, deep green and filled with snow. Nothing moved within it. The sun was pale behind a gray sky.

A wind picked up and shook the little bird. But the bird retained its grip. It was not inclined to depart from a place where it could survey so much at once.

The wind settled, then rose again and pushed from another direction, showering snow crystals. The bird fluffed its feathers and looked about, turning its head, the brightness of its eyes undiminished.

Finally, in a moment of calm the bird flew away.

Copyright 2013 George Lowell Tollefson


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