The Bird

By Jenny Amadeo, age 7

[click to appreciate the fine quality of my artwork]

Once there was a pretty red bird who caught a worm for her babies.

And…… when she got to her nest her babies were….. gone!

When she saw her babies were gone she got very frightened and she did not no what to do.

But when she looked down she saw a rabbit with her baby rabbits and she looked all around and she did not see her babies.

But when she looked up in a tree she saw a squirrel with her babies.

And then she bit his tail and the squirrel let go of the babies and she got her babies back.

The End

1. My favorite part of this story is that my mother apparently used the cover to balance her checkbook.
2. I believe that The Bird is an allegory of the ongoing war on terrorism, where the pretty red bird represents America, the squirrel represents al-Qaeda, the babies represent the world, and the rabbit represents England.
3. And this story captures the genesis of my life-long love affair with periods of ellipsis and starting sentences with prepositions.

21 Responses to “The Bird”

  1. romy Says:

    don’t forget the paratactic structure … the repetition of “but” at the beginning of several sentences in a row is an ancient rhetorical device !
    congratulations, 7-year-old Jenny Amadeo, on your uncanny mastery of rhetorical structures …

  2. RW Says:

    I see the verisimilitude of dichotomy. The wretched torment of the nothingness behind the suburban sprawl within our hearts. The heart of darkness. The throbbing, plaintive chords of mysticism gone berserk and set to the music of the railroad ode, low and mean like a singer from the other side of the tracks powering down on the last morsel of decency left to our degenerate culture. Oneness. Sameness. The dreary existence of the scatterlogical dialectic caught between two monstrous choices either of which will eventually lead to the death of innocence. The death of a puppy.
    You are a genius!

  3. Anonymous Says:

    Dear Jenny,
    I agree with RW– you are a genius. Hello, weren’t most seven year-olds in the 1970s just learning how to read? Of course I call out the decade because lord knows the little ones today are texting each other. Oh, I long for the simpler times. Perhaps The Bird is an allegory for the reward of an unbridled imagination and a sweet girl who’s alpha bird mom will kick the shit out of any squirrel who messes with her babies.
    Love and clearly full of nostalgia tonight,

  4. Anonymous Says:

    Dear Jenny,
    P.S. You kinda went all out with the stapler, didn’t you?!

  5. nina Says:

    And which entity represents France?? See, everyone always forgets about France. You’re sure there wasn’t a kind and wonderful France in the picture somewhere? Can’t you sketch in something that could be France? No one would ever know it’s an add-on to the kid picture. Part of our blogging mission is to educate. We need to get people thinking France is cool.

  6. jenny Says:

    Romy: But I had to look up the word “paratactic” so does that make me dumb?
    But when I did, it made me feel smarter.
    RW: It’s so wonderful to finally be understood and appreciated for the controversial political artist that I am. Thank you, RW.
    Viv: It’s true – my alpha bird mom would kick the crap out of all the neighborhood squirrels. And I love that you noticed the staples – I was going to mention them, actually. Clearly, I intended my work to be archival quality.
    Nina: You’re back! You’ve been gone so long. I am a francophile through and through, so I never forget about France. I have been trying to figure out the symbolism of the worm, but I don’t think it represents France. Any thoughts?

  7. peteV Says:

    I would like to buy the movie rights to your story. Tentative casting:
    Mama bird – Kathy Bates
    Baby birds – Box of Peeps
    Rabbit – Parker Posey
    Squirrel – Alan Rickman

  8. shari Says:

    So really “Squirly-J” was conceived in your 7-year old mind, but waited until now to be revealed.
    Either that or this obsessive fascination you seem to have with squirrels is starting to scare me. Oh and as an aside, in our family, “Buddy-the-Nut-Slut” is the unofficial nickname for all squirrels. Just so you know.

  9. kris dresen Says:

    I’m particularly impressed by seven-year-old Jenny’s use of typography. You even have a nice drop-cap going on there.

  10. jenny Says:

    Pete: Now you, my friend, are a genius! Alan Rickman would be perfect as the squirrel! I could also see the babies being played by some semi-famous quadruplets. Know any? Yet the question still remains – who/what is the worm?
    Shari: That kind of struck me as well – why am I obsessed with being the squirrel? The squirrel is bad! He is trying to steal our freedom! Ironically, “Buddy the Nut Slut” was my nickname in college. Weird.
    kris: Ha! You can see from all the erasures and overwrites that I was a perfectionist. Do you need an apprentice?

  11. mainja Says:

    i have often wondered what a therapist would do with the childhood writings of their clients…

  12. teahouseblossom Says:

    That’s awesome. Apparently your artistic talents manifested themselves at an early age!

  13. Jessica Says:

    I don’t know who is cuter….your seven year old self or peteV.

  14. asia Says:


  15. Dustin Says:

    …and the rabbit represents England.
    Still laughing.

  16. amanda Says:

    what an intuitive child. who knew you could so accurately forecast world events.

  17. jenny Says:

    mainja: Egads! I’d never let a therapist look at my childhood drawings/stories… I’d be locked up for sure.
    THB: Ha – thanks! Sadly, I could never find a publisher who would even look at The Bird.
    Jess: Definitely PeteV. He’s apparently a big movie producer, which makes him instantly more attractive than the average Joe.
    asia: Swell!
    Dustin: Hee hee.
    Amanda: They didn’t call me NostraJenus for nothing.

  18. Natasha Says:

    I was thinking the Worm was a symbol of Love/ Peace, then I read the story again and thought it was a Weapon of Mass Distruction. And now I think maybe it’s our dependence on Foreign Oil. No matter what, the worm has disappeared by the end of the story. I mean, good for the mother bird that she got her babies back and all, but we’ve lost the Worm.
    Wait a minute what am I thinking… the worm is Tequila!!

  19. jenny Says:

    Nat: See – at one point I was thinking that the babies were the weapons of mass destruction, because the squirrel is hiding them and the bird is trying to find them. And then I thought that maybe the worm represents democracy, our freedom. Where has it gone?
    Or as you suggest, the mom is just trying to get her babies drunk on tequila. Replace “tequila” with “chianti” and you’ve just captured my youth perfectly.

  20. sandra Says:

    I mostly love that it ended with the protagonist biting some tail…

  21. communicatrix Says:

    This is the most righteous storytelling I have seen in some time. It is a crime–a CRIME, I tell you–that there were no blogs back in 19(mumblety mumble).