There was a pigeon with a broken wing hanging out on our stoop. Had cradled itself into the crook of the door jamb, handled itself pretty well when we or any of our neighbors threw the door open. Just kind of blinked and waddled, no fuss. Still, the pigeon was a cause for concern. Jen decided it was doomed and that we should put it out of its misery, so we got the bb gun out and loaded it up and psyched ourselves up to drive a pellet through its brains.
I was a little queasy about it, but she grew up with animals, injured animals who needed killing, so I deferred. Slunk back to the stoop with my dumb little rifle hoping that none of our neighbors would see. But oh, a neighbor was there, and she was also concerned about the bird. We described the killing plan, and the neighbor expressed both disapproval and understanding. No one wants to shoot a bird in the head, but maybe it’s come time to shoot a bird in the head.
The neighbor’s reservations gave me an out, and so we collectively opted out of gunplay and into naïveté. We scootched the pigeon into the garbage pen out in front of the building, the theory being that crueler creatures wouldn’t enter the garbage pen. It would be the bird’s recovery room, it would be unmolested. We fetched a dish of water and prepared a dish of sunflower seeds and our neighbor cracked apart some old dry pretzels. We made a pigeon haven.
Will the pigeon improve? Likely no. It will stand around until it keels over or is torn apart. But we are forcing hope upon it, the poor beast. Wish this pigeon luck, then.