Black birds screaming in the dead of night.

Posted by Jeni in Ad Infinitum | 8 May 2014

So butter wouldn't melt in his mouth, the delicious KING SOLOMON, he with the shiny black coat and white bootees. Then before you could scream SOLLEEEEE NOOOOO he had floored one tiny baby blackbird.

I screamed and poked him with a garden cane.

Jim came running out of the studio grabbed the chick and cradled it close to him. Went to find a box. I found a dropper and rescue remedy. Jim took paper from the shredder and stuffed it into a little brown box, put it under a lamp. When the parents started chattering and screaming, clucking and crying good old Solly was busy playing with a second chick. The pussy has now been bloodied and we had two tiny chicklets shocked out their tiny little lives, to deal with.

In between planting herbs, onions, garlic and tomatoes.

I dripped rescue remedy onto the sides of their beaks, until they opened their little yellow mouths wide. I caught myself opening my mouth with them. Jim hunted for worms, mashed em up and tried to feed them with tweezers.

Then we found out cat food was the preferred fare for tiny blackbirds. They got stronger and stronger by the minute. Jim fed them until very late. The dawter, who came home for one night, got up at 6.00 to give them their early morning feed. Then we called the wild life hospital in Fairwarp Lane. Went to the wrong address first, the old one, then drove past the new hospital. The time was slipping away, as were the hungry little chicklets. TWO DEAD BIRDS IN A BOX was the title of the film that was playing out before us.

And then we found it. Behind metal gates. Low buildings with extra special people who get paid nowt to look after all the injured animals people bring in. The little mites were warm. They will be put in an incubator tell they're bigger then transferred to a nest then put in an aviary and when they can shake they tail feathers they will be let out in a group and be monitored for two weeks. Till they're off and flying into the woodland. Solly now has a black velvet collar on, with diamante crowns, and a BELL. The birds can hear him coming. We can hear him coming. No more dead birds for us.

He's now asleep on the table, on top of his two wooly sweaters. The old man is in the studio, I' ve just made mung bean soup, done me yoga for the day and will settle down to write or read or eat, not sure which comes first, safe in the knowledge that all the little birds are safe from the tinkling monster.

Jeni Barnett tells of her scrumptious time at Good Food Live in her first audiobook! Download NOW from iTunes

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