Not in Vain

Photo: Tina Breen
If I can stop one heart from breaking,
I shall not live in vain:
If I can ease one life the aching,
Or cool one pain,
Or help one fainting robin
Unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain.

~ Emily Dickinson

Several years ago, we found a robin’s egg in our vegetable garden and to our surprise (dismay) discovered a tiny beak slowly sawing away at its beautiful blue/green shell. After countless phone calls and hours of searching for a nest to return the egg to, we found an organization that was willing to take this poor creature in. Wing & a Prayer was an organization run by Janice and Michael Enright in Bracebridge, Ontario. At any given time, the Enrights cared for hundreds of birds. These birds, that would have otherwise perished, were lovingly nurtured and eventually released back into the wild. (Regrettably, I cannot find their organization online anymore.) Just to give you an indication of their efforts though, for several weeks a robin hatchling requires nourishment every 15 minutes during daylight hours!

We never knew the fate of our little robin. I like to imagine though that perhaps one of the robins that visits us each spring is related to the one we saved. The story warms me too, thinking of my husband making the urgent 140 km trip to Bracebridge in the hopes of saving one precious bird.