Today I had the most extraordinary experience while I sat in my garden fully concentrated on writing some reflections about the beautiful book I just finished; “I skymningen sjunger koltrasten,” – in English called ”The blackbird sings at dusk” by Linda Olsson. I heard a huge noise in the bushes and trees behind me. I quickly turned around, and out of the sea of leaves bounced my cat with a helpless little bird in its mouth.
I ran to see if I could save the poor bird. The cat let go of the bird when I insisted, and I gently laid the little bird in my hand. The small chest heaved up and down, and its little eyes looked at me and blinked again and again – and its stare almost looked human like.
Deep red blood seeped onto my hand. I had never studied a living bird up so close before. I felt so much for the poor bird, and with a desire to help and without knowing what else to do to, I stroked it gently while removing the few feathers that was ripped off. I felt the warmth of this creature in my hand. (This is the second time I see my cat having caught a bird in its almost 11 year lifetime. Thank God it is not a habit of our cat.).
After some time I decided to bring the bird into the house to show my daughter, but as soon as I approached the entrance of the house, the bird started to flap its wings and all of a sudden it showed so much life and seemed to have all this strengths. It first gave me hope that it might live. So I laid it down on a leaf hoping it would recover on its own. But when I went to check on it after some minutes I found it dead.
The blackbird is a symbol for magnificence and life in the very touching and inspiring book by Linda Olsson. She beautifully illustrates the hopelessness people can feel when they are different, rejected or alone. The common interest in literature between three neighbors – who are the main characters of the book – and the respectful, patient, warm and caring attitude they show for each other – help to turn all their lives around, as they develop deep relationships, and achieve a sense of purpose, love and joy.
This profound book spoke to me deeply because of the realism of the characters and how much people can help and give to each other by being interested, caring, supportive and generous. One part of the red thread throughout the book is the importance of living with a sense of purpose in order to feel fully alive.