A sign from heaven

It was the day after my father’s death that a bird flew in through the garage door and perched itself near to where I was working.

To try to take my mind off my father’s passing I was busying myself with something mechanical as I often did when he was living.

I was surprised, mesmerized even, it was as if any minute this bird looking at me with such familiarity was going to greet me with a “Now then, Stephen”.

I found myself unable to avert my eyes from this very bold greyish blackish bird firmly perched on the end of a brush handle busily nodding with familiarity at scooter parts hanging from the wooden roof beams, tools positioned on shelves and larger items placed on the ground.

I began to feel warm all over and a strange sense that it was my father and not a bird that I was in the presence of.

It looked me up and down nodding in a satisfied sort of way as if to say “I’m so relieved that you turned out okay in the end”.

And then with one last look around it flew out of the door and I watched it make its way high up into the sky until I could see it no more.

In hospital my father’s sickness prevented him from saying a proper goodbye to my mother, my brother and I and that’s also what I believe he returned for.

On that day I feel my father’s spirit came back to let me know that he was okay and that he was still a part of my life and those of his other loved ones.

The warm feeling was still with me as childhood memories of my father flooded into my eyes and through this release of tears I finally felt like I was one of his sons.

A poem by Stephen Austwick.