As I walked through town last night the Blackbird was singing his heart out on top of a chimney pot. This morning there is a chaffinch bursting with song. And there is a chattering of sparrows jostling for the next boxes and showing off their assets.
Being sociable birds we decided to build them a semi. A two-side nest box to be shared with neighbours. They keep popping in and out, first one side, then the other, like estate agents showing a prospective client round rooms. Swapping over, having a bit of a squabble, then carrying on as if nothing had happened.
Then occasionally one will bring a tuft of nesting material to impress his mate and earn him the right to bonk her on the roof!
I love the carnal stirrings of the natural world. It’s not that I’m pervy or anything, it’s just that it really means spring is on its way when there’s pairings in the wild. And it’s so beautifully removed from the the commercial hype that showing our love has become around Valentine’s day.
It seems far more fitting to bring your Valentine a token of your togetherness and love in the form of an act or a gesture that you’ve put some effort into – even if not nesting material – than buying a pre-packed, prescribed and generic box of something dictated by consumerism which is polluting the natural world and all the other living things in it.
Many of our garden birds are on the decline because of our pollutive habits and the way we farm is destroying habitats. The places that support them are destroyed or disappearing all together as we grab and greed and lust for far, far more than we ever really need to support us.
Just thought I’d mention it so you can think about loving the earth’s creatures as much as you love your Valentine and be mindful of the way in which you show it. I’m not suggesting you go out and bonk on the roof (although if that’s your thing…) I’m just asking that you also think about the world’s roof as you celebrate a day of love!