Free as a Bird


Today’s Perfect Moment might be nothing more than timing. I saw a bird in the subway.  Since there are numerous entrances and since the next station south is above ground, that probably isn’t such a big deal.

However, it got me thinking of omens and stories.

One of my favourite songs is Freebird by Lynyrd Skynyrd. The band was decimated when several members (Steve Gaines, Cassie Gaines, and lead singer Ronnie Van Zant) died in a airplane crash.  They reformed and got Johnny Van Zant, the younger brother of Ronnie, to be the lead singer.  He, initially, refused to sing Freebird and let it be an instrumental.  This can be seen in the documentary of their 1987 tour.

I later heard a story that, somewhere, he came across a bird struggling to fly. When he got close the bird had either been tied up or tangled up in some string or something.  He released the bird and it flew away, one would assume, joyfully.  He took it as a sign that he could start singing Freebird.  As far as I know, he has done so to this day.

I had the song in my head the whole way home…so I put my headphones in and listened to it and thought about good omens. I think I will take it as such.


I couldn’t decide which picture I liked better, so I included them both.  I would love to hear what the photographically inclined have to say.

About Anthony

I am: equal parts rebel, romantic and shockingly average Joe. a writer trapped inside of an ESL teacher's body. an introverted attention seeker. a teacher who hopes one day to be called "Captain, my Captain." an intellectual who can do some very dumb things. a person whose Japan experience, despite being so long ago, still exerts a strong influence upon him. a lover of books, music, beer, hockey and Pizza.
This entry was posted in Aspirations, Reflections, Perfection, authentic, bonus, chance meetings, commuting, luck, Omens, public transportation, subway, Yonge and Eglinton and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Free as a Bird

  1. Heide says:

    I always feel sorry for birds (and animals) that get caught in the environments we humans have created for ourselves — but I do love the more positive twist you’ve found here. I also like your images. In my uneducated opinion the second one is stronger because it shoes how out-of-place the pigeon is in the subway station. Also, the fact that it’s (unknowingly, presumably) standing on the Yellow Line of Danger adds an extra layer of danger to the story. Great post, Anthony.

    • Anthony says:

      I am frustrated that we haven’t found a way to stop birds from crashing into windows on big office towers.
      Thanks for the feedback on the photos.

  2. Hunida says:

    I am not “photographically inclined” but I like the first photo a bit more. 🙂

  3. Amy says:

    Thank you for sharing the story. I like both, because each has a story to tell.

  4. John says:

    Lynard Skynyrd is of course a name I have heard. In a way they are AFTER my time. So I knew nothing about the plane crash or the brothers or “Freebird”.

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