``Write what you know'' . . . Do they mean Something so removed from castles, queens and lords As that small, fledgling thrush I saved from someone's cat? His feathers trailing out of whiskered mouth, -- A simple thing like that? It's true. The thrill of holding heart-beat, baby-down, and flashing watchful eye Just long enough to feel the tiny vise-grip of his feet along my finger Was essence pure, of innocence awry; Such, that I held my breath and muttered sound As close as I could come to what the parents, Somewhere off the ground Were making, To encourage him to get aloft and not to linger. ``Write what you know of life.'' I know this much: When that young bird, so near to seeming dead, Fluttered softly free, and hurried down the hill on pink and fragile legs, As though by compass led, Across the street and up the other side, I felt a part of something I must try to put in print. And, not to beat about the bush, It wasn't all of heaven and earth, I understand; But it was far more than a hint of royal worth, This intimate occasion of a bird in hand.