There’s a robin’s nest near my kitchen window, hidden but for the activity around it. Robins zip into my view and land on a tasty patch of soil nearby, pecking at dead strands of grass, running along, pecking at another attractive set of nest-looking threads, running along until beaks drip many threads. Then they launch and fly out of view. Only to repeat the whole process again.
Later, great commotion rends the air as robins fly out and flap at sparrows and juncos and finches that dare to fly too close to their treasured nest. Squawks split molecules and feathers float to the ground; the intruders flit off flapping their wings for all they’re worth; the robins self-satisfiedly return to their nest.
Later, a robin lands in a sea of soft greens and blossoms and runs until they find a juicy worm. It dips its head fast and pops back up with a juicy morsel dangling from their beak. Opening wide, it gulps it down, espies another wriggly morsel, hops one hop, and grabs it. Once satiated, it flies back to the nest where presumably it regurgitates the whole mess away from our eyes.
It’s all rather like writing. Building the nest in which the manuscript will incubate. Maybe a comfy chair, a new cushion, a few photos, a good set of dictionary and writing manuals. Keeping the distractions at bay, the ideas from intruding that will steal the heart of the central idea from your memory as you brood over it day after day, month after month. Feeding the hungry little thing once idea turns to typing, banging away on the keyboard day hour after hour until finally it’s ready to fly from the hidden depths of your computer into the sight of the great wide world. And all you can hope is that no one will clip its wings or eat it up but let it soar on the lift of excited atoms of air.