Despite their best efforts,
a pair of young bluebirds
aren’t succeeding with their first nest.
They’ve chosen a house my husband built
for others: a kind of lean-to for robins, phoebes,
and song sparrows. Only three sides,
an open floor, a slanting roof, a space exposed,
so each beginning is easily dismissed by wind.
My early love affairs were like that,
but Oh, that swoon of blue—
She gathers dry grasses.
He stands guard on the barbecue.
Hers is a cup of hope, possibility, so fragile.
It never fails to make me smile
when a male cardinal at the feeder
delivers a seed to a female
with what appears to be a kiss.
So I should greet you, each day.
What good does it do to chastise ourselves,
as years pass, for our lack of bright feathers?
Perhaps my memory fails me, but wasn’t it a barred owl
we heard that first weekend we spent making love?
I recall starting a poem, a love note really,
about calling out for my heart’s desire.
Each night, this June, we hear the whippoorwill,
insistent, tireless, randy. Sometimes he is so loud
we have to close the windows to sleep.
When we wake, I curve my body
in gratitude, and feather my fingers through yours.
I suggest that perhaps you could attach
a small addition to the platform, like an arm
to hold the nest. It would be easy to cut
a piece of scrap and tack it on. Sure, you say,
and go out to your wood shop, and get to work.
Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 23, Issue 4.
See all items about Kim Ports Parsons