Avian Antics in a Troubled World

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“As with dirt-scraping towhees, and perched finches and titmice waiting, This day is an opportunity to move forward…”

Busty orange breasts take presence in the courtyard,
wiry feet cling to a copper rim
precariously balancing the full weight
of each robin fat from a
harvest of worms rising from the damp soil.
Like birds on a see-saw,
each one dips its amber beak into the copper vessel
outside my morning window.

White spotted orange and black towhees,
hop about and scrape the soil
in hunt of seed, a berry dropped
by another bird in flight above;
or an ant, or a spider, or really, any bug will do;
finches and titmice perch on a budding tree.
They observe, they dart from branch to branch.

This sunrise ritual raises my spirit, like
these feathered beasts that take to air
with nothing more than a flap of wing.

Each avian antic lifts me away
from the troubles of the world,
the whiners,
the accusers,
the conspirators,
the fearful,
the hoarders,
and the empty headed do-nothings.

The feathered in the courtyard
halt me from yelling in all caps,
tailed by endless exclamation points:

“But what if you were fighting
for your life every single day,
and that’s your first reality upon rising?
Shut up! Shut the fuck up.
Look at what you have:
shelter, perhaps a garden,
perhaps laughing children absent in your fears,
perhaps a new future ahead,
perhaps generosity from friends,
neighbors, or people you’ve never met before.

All troubles pass.
Inconvenience comes with birth.
It’s universal.
It’s a teaching, a lesson, a builder of bones.

Change is here, no doubt.
But do the busty orange breasted
birds in the courtyard care? Probably not.
As with dirt-scraping towhees, and
perched finches and titmice waiting,
This day is an opportunity to move forward;
This day, if we look, is filled with gifts;
This day is open-armed with new possibility;
This day is good to rise the spirits of those
who awaken sad, awaken afraid, awaken lost.”

Do my thoughts and words matter
in this time of change?
Will those who should listen care?

Such is a word-crafter’s dilemma.
We’re like see-sawing birds at the fount,
like hopping, scraping birds on the ground,
like perched birds in a budding tree,
always in search for the seed of a word
that fills the belly of a thought
that begs for flight.

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