Birds have always terrified me. Sinister black eyes. The ability to fly. The fact that they evolved from dinosaurs and you know they are just waiting, biding their time until they decide to revolt and take over the world.
So, having to feed my aunt's cockatoo while she was away on vacation, was a constant struggle between fear and responsibility.
I would go to her house after school, and pour the seed or feed or whatever he ate through the bars of his cage. I then turned on the radio. The cockatoo apparently liked the classic rock station while he ate lunch.
I would then wander around her house. The house that used to belong to my grandparents.
I found a photo album on the living room table and flipped through the pages of photos, first black and white and then gradually moving to colour.
A picture was missing from a page, you could tell by the white square surrounded by yellowing paper. I wondered what it had been of.
A squawk from the kitchen stopped my wondering. Another squawk and then the clash of clipped wings. I heard the cage fall and slam on the linoleum floor. I ran to the kitchen. The cage lay there, bent and it's door open. Feathers fel