My great-uncle has touched yet another generation. This week, our daughter keyed in on the Miksche print that graces our cabin wall. She pointed. And she said her first word: “Bird.”
Bird. This from the girl whose first sounds were that of pygmy owls and Canada geese. In the hospital, not crying, but bird calls.
Bird. This print has been a part of nearly all of my days. It hung in my parents’ home throughout my childhood. My own copy has moved with me from apartment to apartment, to trailer, to cabin.
Bird. This, this subject of three of the first articles I ever had published: raven, owl, swallow.
Other birds out the window have since captured Sylvie’s interest: black-capped chickadees in the sunflowers, Stellar’s jays stealing the dog food, turkey families weaving through the trees. But it was Mike Miksche’s drawing that first spoke to her, eliciting the first word.
Long after she fledges, this image – these birds – will decorate Sylvie’s memories of home.