I let them out of their cage almost every day, and I also let them fledge, because birds are meant to fly. Clipping the wings protects them, but it’s also like putting them in a wheelchair. It is the nature of a bird to fly. When I let my last big parrot, Parrot, fledge, she became much more confident and open to our relationship (and I never let the linnies out when she was outside of her cage, because I was afraid she might hurt them. They were indigenous to different continents and did not speak the same birdy language).
It was safe, because my 5th-floor walkup apartment in the East Village had no windows in the living room. There was no way for the birds to get out.
For the most part, the linnies stayed on their cage, just hanging around with each other. Sometimes they would make slow, careful laps around my living room, or fly to me. I never tried to dictate their behavior. They were so beautiful, and I miss them so much. I knew them each, as individuals.
Well, in my dream (was it actually a nightmare…? Not quite, but almost), I’d let the linnies out of their cage so that they could play. There was a child boy in my apartment, and the left my bedroom door open, when had windows.
And the windows were open.
He came to me, shrieking “One of the birds flew away!”
I rushed immediately to the window and tried to close it, but it wouldn’t close. I grabbed a towel and held it over the open space in the window, but the towel did not cover the open space. The birds could still fly out if they went around the towel.
I was terrified.
Somehow, the door was closed, and we got the other three birds into the cage.
Which one was it, who flew through the window…?
It was Monkey (that is his name, Monkey, because he loved to climb around and hang upside down). Monkey was absolutely gorgeous, a perfect specimen. I ordered him from San Diego and picked him up from the airport. He was the boldest and strongest of the linnies. If I introduced new food, or a new toy in their cage, he was always the first one to check it out or go exploring. He was turquoise. He was beautiful and I’d post a picture of him now (I took lots), but I can’t bear to look at them right now because of the dream. He was also wild as a March hare, and wouldn’t allow me to touch him, but as long as I didn’t physically impose myself upon him, he wasn’t afraid of me at all.
Monkey flew away to a certain death.
My NYC analyst, the Freudian, said that my birds are my heart. I’ve had so many dreams when they were released out of my protection.
I have failed to protect myself in this life. And nobody else can do it for me.