Sunday, March 08, 2009

Song of the Swallows

Yesterday morning I got up in time for a quick run before the day's activities. I ran to the tune of spring birds.

Then I judged the local National History Day competition (junior high kids' websites... hilarious... and so fun to help them think of ways to make their sites really pop and really be history... and now I can tell you all about Harriet Beecher Stowe, the little lady who "started" the Civil War; David Axelrod, whose legacy of running the Obama campaign really is too current to be history; Jonas Salk, who discovered the polio vaccine; John Muir, who apparently is an individual in history, according to this year's theme; Julia Child, who taught Americans to love French food; and some American lady from Wisconsin who led some spy revolt against Hitler but was killed by the guillotine--the facts are a little fuzzy). Then I went to the National Postal Museum with Robin.

And then I came home and sat on my back patio and spraypainted a big poster frame bright red because these are the things I do on the Saturday before spring break and I'm completely frustrated with school. Ready to throw in the towel. And the Ph.D. Who needs it? Seriously, people.

As I sat there, contemplating the ensuing battle that has been going on between my head and my heart for some months now (now the head is ahead with some great logic! now the heart has felt some pretty intense hope! ah, now the head takes over, castigating that hope with pure reason! but the heart feels a piece of patience! what will ever happen?!?), I heard this sound overtake the skies, right in the helicopter path to the Pentagon over my house. It was a flock of birds, obviously heading north. Obviously spring. Obviously. This was no normal bunch of birds. They were obviously a flock, obviously on a mission for a distinct destination. And they were making a lot of noise about the whole deal.

All of a sudden, I remembered a book way back from days of childhood yore. (is that a word?) Song of the Swallows. I don't even remember much about it--other than it was a Caldecott and it was about the birds that return to that California mission every year. On the same day. Without fail. Even when it seemed like it was too late or the conditions weren't just right, those birds came.

And I remembered one of my favorite all-time phrases in all of scripture: "He had also verified his word unto them in every particular" (Alma 25:17). Just like phrases like "And God remembered Rachel," and "Sunday will come." (Name those tunes your own self.)

Spring IS coming. It's at the gates. The swallows are on their way. There is hope. I can't tell you what will come out of the battle of my heart, nor how I will ever advance to candidacy (or when for that matter!), but I know that every word, every promise, every hope will be verified.

And I ordered the book. Song of the Swallows by Leo Politi, out of print. I found it on bookfinder for $2.80. It better be as good as I remember.


Jennifer said...

I love you.

Hang in there and fly like a bird.

The Wyler Family said...

i can't wait!

Laurel said...

i love this on so many levels.