Twitter: Because I Have Suffered

First response to suffering: Because I have suffered, I don’t care about the suffering of others. Second response to suffering: Because I have suffered, I don’t want to see others suffer.

Spring: Plastic bags snagged in the stubble field are turned into the soil.

Good house: / sparrows out back / feasting in the millet. — Issa

Two mylar Valentine’s Day balloons are stuck high in my neighbor’s silver maple. They aren’t just an eyesore; they pose a threat to area birds. This isn’t how you tell someone you love them.

Dried hydrangea blossoms stumble along the culdesac, the wind’s playthings.

Snow. Wind. A pair of red-winged blackbirds clings to the crabapple.

You can tell a lot about a person from their detritus.

I come to know you through the things the wind blows from your yard to mine.

You once held the mylar balloons that quiver in the silver maple.

Your inflatable packing is strewn across my yard like entrails.

I walk around picking up your branches, your receipts, your skiffs of tinfoil.

Take my birds as a sign of goodwill. Let them sing you back to joy.

I’ll retrieve your balloons with a cherry picker — deflated hearts that announce your love.

Your plastic will become my plastic. Your glass, my glass. I want your caps, your lids, your Juicy Juice boxes and their delicate little straws. Let it all blow my way.

What’s this? Your pill sorter. The chambers are chalky and taste like salt.

Have my watering can and two-tiered birdbath, my chipmunk and his major and minor hoards.

You crossed the boundary long ago, so take what you want. This leaf. This seed. This wagon. This hoe.

Twitter: Bed of Moss

A red-winged blackbird has come to visit. What a surprise.

Over the din of construction equipment and yard tools, the male red-winged blackbird calls for a mate.

The red-winged blackbird seems to be serenading a pair of courting mourning doves.

A feather floats to the ground. Whose?

Even after I forget who I am, I think I will remember birds.

Today, my Turin horse was a pair of bluebirds trying to nest in a construction zone.

The next time you see a bird, know that part of me is with you.

I kept one thousand words in a cage, then I set them free.

On new asphalt, the muddy tracks of Canada geese look like hieroglyphs.

Unable to accept what is, I tried to will a dead goldfinch back to life today.

If I hold your neck, will it unbreak? If I open your eyes, will you see? If I run my fingers along your feathers, will you fly? Summer is coming, your brightest season. Now you lay in my hand, your toes curling as if around a branch. I breathe and you don’t.

Today, my Turin horse was a small bird who died because he tried to fly into the reflection of a tree.

I laid the goldfinch to rest on a bed of moss and covered him with dried hydrangea blossoms.

In this world / we walk on the roof of hell, / gazing at flowers. — Issa

Twitter: A Desolating Experience

I wish birds could read. Then I’d have my preferred audience.

T. H. White wrote about nature because he didn’t fit in with people. Same.

Falling in love is a desolating experience, but not when it is with a countryside. — T. H. White

Humans are the only species to which I have fallen prey.

In this world / we walk on the roof of hell, / gazing at flowers. — Issa

Strong wind. Crackling house. A conversation.

Thorns and seeds in glass jars. A tackle box packed with toys. Two journals: one practical, one desperate. These will remain when I’m gone.

I just learned that blue jays are the architects of America’s oak forests. Amazing.

The wind tonight is straight out of The Turin Horse.

Every leaf a bird. Every bough a bird. Bird, the wind. Bird, the air. Motion before thought is the bird inside you — scratch marks on stone.

Winter is when I cry a little every night, mostly about the suffering of animals.

Canada geese glide through the air’s church bells.

As I learn the names of birds, I am forgetting the names of people.

I know some birds by their shadows.

Some people feel like glue traps.

The closer you get to real matter, rock, air, firewood, boy, the more spiritual the world is. — Jack Kerouac

The day after Donald Trump won the election, I walked into a canyon.

I’m not sure what all the American robins were doing in my backyard this afternoon, but it appeared to be some sort of flash mob.

We got the tube feeder and heated birdbath set up just in time for winter. New visitors include cedar waxwings and black-capped chickadees.

This morning, I saw a squirrel sitting like Buddha at the base of my sweetgum tree.

When the last mourning dove disappeared, I was more alone than ever.

Twitter: Destroyed

I saw my first-ever red-shouldered hawk today. We watched each other for a long time.

I saw the red-shouldered hawk where the brook and meadow meet. Part of me is still there.

I found where the killdeer go at night.

The internet is screwed. Take up birding.

I went outside to find the blue jay who was imitating a hawk. Instead, I saw a red-tailed hawk shoot out of my sweetgum tree.

There’s a northern flicker nesting in my silver maple.

Why am I so happy? Because I’m destroyed.

Suddenly, the air is snow-colored.

And sometimes a day like today is like / an empty room and this empty room / is a treasure. — Allison Grayhurst

Nostalgia, you are a leaking window.

Like finials, mourning doves embellish my fence on this otherwise unadorned day.

I saw an eastern bluebird in my yard today. I SAW AN EASTERN BLUEBIRD IN MY YARD TODAY.

I found two nests in the silver maple.

Two doors down, a boy rides his toy tractor through the leaves.

All the time I pray to Buddha / I keep on / killing mosquitoes. — Issa

My advice? Find some earth. Walk on it, slowly.

You can find me in the wetlands, but that’s not an invitation to come find me.

Night. A moth at my window. Hello.

I lost my curse words in the woods.

How I look when I see birds is not how I look when I see people.