• He watched a catbird hopping around in an azalea that was readying itself to bloom; he envied the bird for knowing nothing of what he knew; he would have swapped souls with it in a heartbeat. And then to take wing, to know the air's buoyancy even for an hour: the trad was a no-brainer, and the catbird, with its lively indifference to him, its sureness of physical selfhood, seemed well aware of how preferable it was to be the bird.