It was a crow with a broken upper beak.
One day, it stood on a brick wall separating our home from our neighbors on the west. I was in a good mood and so I sang a song to it I composed simultaneously , something about a faraway princess and his being her messenger. (How I knew it was a 'he'- I don't know, I just assumed).
He eyed me dubiously at first, and relaxed at the realization that I was a bit cacophonous but innocuous. I thought I should reward such an enduring audience and borrowed cookies from my mother and placed them on the wall. He performed a sort of war dance around it stepping side-wise to and fro, then suddenly picked it with his broken beak and rushed to the quieter end of the wall where he munched on it. He flew away without saying thanks.
The next day, however, I heard a knock on my bedroom window, south of the house. I don't know how he realized it was my room, but he got me a half eaten fish-bone and cawed, coaxing me delicately to eat it. I was surprised at this gallantry. He probably sacrificed his lunch for me. I begged some more cookies from my mother.' It is that wretched crow again!' I told her he got me something too. She couldn't believe her eyes when she saw it.
I often shared scraps of food with him. One day, he even got his girlfriend along. I wondered if she was the reason he broke his beak. Was she worth fighting over? I guess she was. I looked at them like a mother regards her grown-up children. She fussed with him and they fed each other bits of food. He wasn't as lonely as I had imagined him to. It was good to know.
I had almost forgotten about him, and then Dada mentioned him in a conversation today. Crows live a good many years - over a score. I wonder if I will still see him if I visit our old house.
You know about my pet dog, did I tell you I had a cat too?