Gente que Cuenta

The song of the bird,
by Leonor Henríquez

Birds and flowers Atril press e1711395551729
Hours for Roman use, unknown author, c. 1470-1480

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      It is one of those books from my adolescence, by Anthony de Mello, which left a beautiful reflection in my life that I will share at the end.

In the meantime, I offer you an auditive meditation.

I went for a walk along the river, in these days that announce Spring, the one that arrives with its “thousand harmonies”, as a song says.

I told myself I would focus on all the sounds I could identify.

This is how this story begins.

As background music, the murmur of the river, that miracle of presences that has no yesterday, nor today, nor tomorrow.

The breeze, like a bamboo flute, accompanying the path.

And suddenly a powerful trill, two crystalline notes, a musical B and G, I think, diaphanous and repetitive. On a branch, the tiny Chickadee, the bird of our province of Alberta. For being so small, he has what we call big lungs.

Beyond, the clatter of a drill; then a chirp. It’s the woodpecker, or Toc Toc, as I affectionately call him.

Going further into my walk, I hear some whistles.

A loving dialogue.

I look up, they are the eagles flying in a circle, perhaps looking for food for their little eaglets that were recently born.

I continue, comforted by this wonderful concert, interrupted only to greet some dog friends, and continue on my way.

Returning home, I hear a squeak. I recognize it, it is the Canadian Blue Jay, the blue bird, the one of legend, the one that brings omens of happiness.

I get home and sit down to reflect with my glass of water.

That’s when I remembered the phrase I promised for the end, from Anthony de Mello’s book.

”  –    Why do the birds sing?

And the teacher responded.

– The bird does not sing because it has a statement to make. Sings because it has a chant to express”.

I think that we humans, thirsty for luminous space, have the soul of a bird.

www.atril .press Leonor Henríquez e1670869356570

Leonor Henríquez (Caracas, Venezuela) Civil Engineer by training (UCAB 1985), writer and apprentice poet by vocation. From her time in engineering emerged her Office Stories (1997), another way of seeing the corporate world. Her latest publications include reflections on grief, Hopecrumbs (2020) ( and “The Adventures of Chispita” (2021) ( an allegory of life inside Mom’s belly.
Today she shares her “impulsive meditations” from Calgary, Canada, where she lives.

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