Lorna wanted, more than anything else, to write. Unfortunately, finding a teacher was difficult.
People did not react well when a gigantic wasp flew into the English departments of various colleges seeking instruction. Lorna would land on the desk, and, with exquisite manners, ask how she might learn the basics of language and syntax. Alas, no matter how calmly and kindly she asked, the response from each of the professors was to reach for a heavy book or newspaper, or to simply flee the room screaming.
Beating her wings with a depressed drone, Lorna flew back into the woods, once again saying hello to the trees, for she knew every one of them by name. She so wanted to tell everyone about these trees, and how they each spoke with a different voice and whistled a different tune when the wind streamed through them. She was, in fact, so deep in thought about her many acquaintances that she gasped slightly when she heard a voice say “please stop so that I may admire your streamlined chassis, and your vivid markings.”
Lorna turned, and saw a summer tanager holding a pen in her wing, beckoning Lorna towards her nest.
“Please don’t be afraid of me,” said the bird, whose name was Sylvia, and who, unfortunately, belonged to a species known for making meals out of wasps. “I simply seek to preserve you in a poem of my own creation.”
In that moment, Lorna decided that her desire to discuss writing was far greater than her fear of summer tanagers. She landed on the edge of the Sylvia’s nest, and watched as the feathered poet formed words that made Lorna feel as if her colors were rays of sunlight across the night sky.
Having finally found a kindred soul, Lorna shared her frustrations at her inability to find anyone brave enough to be her tutor. Sylvia replied that it was Lorna who had proven herself brave enough to be Sylvia’s subject, and set about teaching her the basics of verse.
Lorna now shares her poems with the trees, who all applaud with a rustle of leaves. She and Sylvia remain the best of friends, and they eagerly read and listen to each other’s work. And every year, on her birthday, Lorna presents Sylvia with her gift of gratitude: a ream of the smoothest, creamiest handmade paper.