On magpies and burdens

It’s spring, it’s nest-building season, and a couple of days ago I spotted a magpie struggling with a long spindly twig that was at least three times her own length. She flew erratically with the twig trailing below her, until she came to a stop in the ancient oak tree next door. After a pause to get her breath, the magpie tried to take off again, but the twig had become entangled in the branches of the oak tree. Not willing to give it up, she struggled hard for a moment, twisting and pulling at the twig. After a few more jerks and tugs, the twig finally wrenched free, and the magpie continued her unsteady flight, over my roof and out of sight. I imagined her struggling to add this lengthy and unmanageable twig to her nest, and it got me thinking as these things often do. It got me musing about how mentally, and often unrealised, we carry unwieldy burdens; things like resentment, unforgiveness, bitterness, anger, hate, revenge, and a myriad of other unhelpful emotions. We struggle to pull them along with us, thinking in our naivety that it is necessary to carry them and to own them; or not even thinking but just doing it, because that’s what we’ve always done. Then we stop for a moment, and these emotional burdens get entangled with everything else in our lives, but still we hold on to them. And when at last we get to where we think we are taking them, we find that they don’t fit, and that we have ended up hurting ourselves much more than those we wished to punish.
If only we could learn to acknowledge these destructive emotions, and lay them down before they become such a useless burden.

magpie - rspb

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One thought on “On magpies and burdens

  1. Pingback: Magpies talk to each other, video | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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