Angel Wing Salute

More black feathers. These three I could not ignore.

For a couple of days, black feathers strewn across my path were catching my attention. That day, along the path where I walk my dog, three very large black feathers were sticking straight out of the ground as if at attention. Dark thoughts entered my mind. Was someone I know going to die? Why three? Are they the dreaded black angel feathers? I tried to ignore superstitious thoughts filling my head. After all, a great number of crows were flying around the city. As a matter of fact, I had recently read a news article talking about all the crows in the area.

Caving to curiosity, I looked up black feathers on the internet. Some folks feel they are opposite white angel feathers and like me had dark thoughts of bad things happening. Several Angel sites said they are simply angel feathers – neither good nor bad. Angels getting your attention, sort of like an Angel wing wave. A sign of transition.

My mind wouldn’t stop wondering about the three feathers yet I noticed black feathers were no longer appearing. I felt strongly that they were a symbol of some event.

A month later, I received the news my father had died. Neither good nor bad. He had been very ill and wheelchair bound the last decade of his life. His children were not part of his estate planning and we did not get immediate news of his death until his funeral was over and his estate in the process of being disbursed. This was not a surprise.

We had never been close, he being military and a deadbeat dad. I call it how I see our history. My siblings and I made efforts over the years to communicate. He tried to respond. It simply wasn’t in him to correspond or talk with anyone who wasn’t a neighbor or nearby family. My father’s choices were not about me. It was not about me being rejected, inadequate or unlovable. He was a good military man, not a good family man. One-sided relationships are not relationships.

The only thing I could think of to mourn was the lack of a father figure during my childhood and teenage years. My life may have bypassed a few harsh lessons with guidance from a good man. Maybe. It didn’t happen. That said, too much time has gone by to mourn someone I never knew. I’m too old and crotchety to fantasize other outcomes.

For my part, I hope he saved the world during his military time. In the end, he received an Angel wing salute. Appropriate for the transition of a career Air Force man.