Free as a Bird
When I was nine, I ran away from home. My parents didn’t call the police, so I slept in an alleyway with a baby bird that had fallen from its nest. When I woke up in the morning, the baby bird was dead. I had never touched death before, so I picked it up. It was cold and its eyes were open. Maybe it doesn’t know its dead, I thought. Black clouds formed overhead, so I put the baby bird under my shirt, against my skin. Then I closed my eyes and imagined the rain was love and I was warm and the baby bird was alive again.