Cardinals

Each morning, after boiling some water and grinding some coffee beans, I pull back the curtains above the kitchen sink and let in the morning light. I often see two cardinals – a bright red male and his drabber (by our human standards) female paramour – who live in the tangle of bushes and such that line the north side of my yard along the road just outside the kitchen window. I’ve seen these two cardinals – my cardinals, as I’ve taken to calling them – most mornings for the last five years.

Now, it may come as a shock to some of you, assuming you’ve stayed inside with your blinds closed and stayed away from all forms of social media, but Indiana was treated to an honest-to-goodness winter storm this week with inches of snow and the coldest real temperatures since I was 10. Schools are still canceled and Alison and I got a few extra days off earlier in the week as everything ground to a halt Monday and Tuesday. And as I watched the snow fall on Sunday, heavy and wet, I saw my cardinals fluttering around, their color standing out against the white-covered everything. The branches of the bush where they lived were weighed down, bent over and dragging the ground.

I’ve worried the last few nights about my cardinals. Alison says she saw the female recently but I haven’t seen either since Sunday.

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