"Swallow, Swallow, little Swallow, will you not stay with me for one night, and be my messenger?"
This is my favorite line from the book The Happy Prince , which I keep on mentally reciting. The message took on a new significance for me when I watched these little swallows for the first time. It was some weeks ago when I saw a flock of little birds circling overhead and playfully gliding downward and upward. I didn't know at first what kind of birds they were until I was told that they were swallows. As expected, I recited the line orally to myself.
In the story, the Happy Prince asked one swallow to stay with him for just one night in winter so it could fulfill a charitable mission , but the little swallow was reluctant, complaining that all its friends had been off to Egypt to enjoy the sunshine there. However, the swallow was persuaded to stay and served as the Prince's messenger until its death.
This summer, I often see these swallows flying merrily overhead, and I keep remembering the story, especially that one little swallow who sacrificed himself for humanity.