Once, not long ago, the air above our not-yet city was filled with the swoops and chatterings of a lovely, native parrot. Imagine a cloud of these gaudy birds appearing suddenly in a snowstorm, or lighting up the branches of a winter sycamore!
Now, they are colorful ghosts drifting through this alley, and the orchards, prairies, fields and forests they lived among are mostly beneath our streets and houses.
How did an ancient bird disappear in such a brief time?
Here are some short (and very short) stories that have been told about the life and death of the Carolina Parakeet. Some are from the past and some are for the future. Some are bitter, some sweet; some scary or sad, others comforting.
It’s complicated. But, the tales of these ghost birds might also tell our own story, as we navigate a path through abundance and scarcity and try to choose our part in a living world.