Blog post by Jane Spiro

Flight home

A nest

 not to confine and tie

but a branch

from which to fly

I wrote at 17, imagining

what home might be

before I knew quite what I meant

or how true these words would come to be.

And now we share this space

with the life cycle of nest to flight,

first the daily picking of best twigs, 

diving deep into the wisteria back 

and forwards, orange beak pecked tight

carrying the nest’s next morsels, 

and then  the brown-patched child, hatched just here –

making small, failed leaps,  

mistaking a basket for a nest,

getting lost in the lavender bush,

waiting for supper on the flower pot,

making an empty pink O with its beak,

hiding behind the piano, in the cupboard,

standing on the garden table,

head cocked, beak pointing up to sky

               where he is not, not yet.


The male bird establishes a territory in its first winter, and although

it will  stray from this to feed – and often very long distances in

search of food in the winter months – it will always return to the

same territory to breed throughout its life.

A glazier grandfather gifted me

these stones.

Our shared garden is the work

of generations.  In the end


nature finds you, 

brings you home,

               teaches you to fly.

Jane Spiro

See also the related photo in the Gallery

Author: Eynsham Lockdown Editor