On my drive to work, I travel four miles on Rainier Avenue, a gritty four-lane arterial through one of Seattle's seediest neighborhoods: nail parlors, pho restaurants, fast-food chains, a food bank, gang-driven graffiti, a Lowes hardware where every morning there is a crowd of day-workers clustered near the entrance, ready to pound a nail or dig a ditch. Some years back someone in the city had enough long-term vision to see that deciduous trees were planted on either side of the street, and now these trees are tall and grand, skeletal in their pre-spring framework of branches. Today I counted twenty-one crows' nest tucked in among the limbs, rough and twiggy, somewhere within I can only imagine a swaddling softness, beaked bits of rag or paper. Thousands of vehicles pass beneath these nests every day, spewing exhaust, rattling and grinding their way to somewhere. And cached high above, eggs are laid, and hatch, and the new crows send out their plea for sustenance. Nature goes on with its business of living sixty feet above unforgiving pavement.
One of the nests is rapidly disappearing in a froth of pink cherry blossoms.
In a month none will be visible.
It's important that I remember that they are there.