The black and white cat sat on the pavement, looking up. Tail going back and forth. Looking up into the springtime tree. Watching the birds.
The cardinals, one red, one brown, were worriedly hopping back and forth, noisily back and forth, trading spaces on the branches while the cat watched.
The cat waited for one of them to fall like the God-watched sparrow. One of them could trip on a new leaf and tumble from the tree and fall head first and flapping upside down screaming down to the pavement. The cat didn't want to eat them, the bipping birds.
The cat wanted them to fall.
You can fly, the stray-stare said, and then you can fall. The birds worried about this, working between the branches worrying their perches, flying but only a little, only a little putting out of the wings in a little hop-fly to see that they could still land on their feet and still take up the air, still stay there above the cat. They said this to each other: are you sure? are you sure? are you sure? And of course they weren't sure because the cat was there, because the cat could wait. What else has a stray got to do? The cat could wait and flip his cat tail back and forth and the cat could look up until it got too dark to see. Then he could use his cat eyes to wait for the fall.
The cat didn't make a noise.