As the sun dipped below the horizon, casting a warm glow over the coastal marshes, a gathering of egrets unfolded. It was a post-high tide ritual passed down through generations. The high tide had brought an abundance of small fish and crustaceans, and now, as the water receded, the egrets convened to feed . But a sense of urgency filled the air. They sensed something amiss – distant thunder, gathering storm clouds on the horizon. A winter storm approached, and they needed to prepare. With practiced precision, they flew to their communal roosting site in a grove of tall cypress trees. The darkening sky reminded them of nature’s unpredictability. Perched high in the trees, the egrets huddled together, necks tucked beneath wings for warmth and protection. The storm arrived with fury, whipping the marshes with gusty winds and icy rain. But the egrets, with their collective wisdom and unity, weathered the tempest. When morning broke, and the storm had passed, they emerged, white plumage glistening in the newfound sunlight. They had faced the storm together, their bond strengthened by nature’s challenges, knowing that gathering after each high tide would always provide strength in unity. In the days that followed, the egrets continued their gatherings, finding solace in each other’s presence. And as the seasons changed, they watched over the marshes. Their gatherings symbolized resilience in the face of life’s storms.
~ Robert David Atkinson