Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Feeding the Birds

First you must love wings,
feathers, the cautious heart,
the way what is fragile
                                    perches on the soul. 
And, for sure, you must want to keep things alive,
the way history gives wings to time. Watch

you'll see the patterns— how the mighty win
their place; feed their young that knowledge. 
You will see that blue jays bully cardinals –
that grackles arrive ready to fight. 

You will learn about exile and return. 
Eventually, feeding will become an obsession.
And because our souls are shaped like hands
opening and closing on what we love  
your garage will fill with suet sales,
black oilers stored in metal containers,
sugar-water in the fridge.  
We are all small gods. 
Our hearts fierce yet strangely weak. 
And here's the grip:
            When there is loss or sorrow they will feed you. 
Because when the rains come –
even when the rains come –
the birds feed. The birds sing.  

Joy Gaines-Friedler
Millbrook, F.H. Michigan USA
Donated to InsideOut Literary Arts Project, Detroit, Michigan

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