I’ve been trying my hand at more and more poetry this past year. I have a very limited collection of poems in my keeping and, based on what I’m churning out, it’s pretty obvious that I’ve been hitting Wendell Berry and Mary Oliver pretty hard. I’ve tried to write a few in the spirit of Langston Hughes (one of the others I’ve got in my collection) but those ones sound pretty silly so far.
Anyhow, I wrote this one a few weeks ago after sitting in our COLD winter backyard, watching some hummingbirds. Then, last week, we were in Mexico and the boys and I saw a beautiful, bright hummingbird (pictured, if you can see it in the center of the photo) and it reminded me to return to the poem and keep working on it.
Today I saw five hummingbirds in our garden
Actually it may have been four
one doubling back for an encore
after seeing that she had brought me to my feet
I was still, in the quiet of the yard,
thinking of my beloveds, my work, my incurable disease,
my mountain of laundry
when suddenly I realized it was not quiet
The birds, so many of them,
hummingbirds, sparrows, starlings of all stripes
were flitting and dropping and swooping
in front of me as if on a stage
chirruping and trilling and calling to their friends
How busy you all are, I thought,
and what a noisy bunch.
Then I was still, in the quiet of the yard