The scream was piercing. It was followed by another, further away but just as ear-splitting.
I was busy yet it pierced through my bubble of concentration when I heard it again. It was far enough away for me to know it was not a neighbour in trouble. Somewhere over there – too far for me to help.
But the fourth scream was too much for me and I left my computer and my desk and went out to investigate. Perhaps I could do something to help.
Scream after scream came, assaulting my ears. So shrill they were almost deafening.
As I stood in my front garden I tried to work out the direction from which they came. I could hear children playing on the sports grounds one street over, behind the houses opposite my own. I chuckled as I realised it must be a child with a shrill whistle, blowing and blowing, delighting in the noise they made.
But then it came again. The scream. Not from the direction of the playing fields. Much closer.
I swung around, still not sure of the direction.
The next scream was near. Above. And looking up, I saw the screamer.
A long-crested eagle soaring not 30m above my head, calling, screaming, to its mate or its mother who was much higher and was replying with her own screams.
What joy this little home has brought me as I settle in the small town on the coast. I stood in my garden and watch them for five minutes as they soared above my head, swooping and calling, until gradually they drifted away inland.
So beautiful. Such a gift from my God, who sends me these small love tokens from time to time.
Thank you for this one, Lord. It was special.