Gift of a Sparrow’s Nest

It’s like a present found under the tree

when everyone’s sound asleep
on Christmas Eve, and the
thrill of trespassing.

The rustic wrapping is full of hope,
a family’s intimate history written
in twisted straw and cursive grass
and sometimes fine sepia print.

There’s the urgency of architecture:
this twig here, then this one
crossed with that one
just so, and a piece of dried leaf,

the inside saved for certain grass
as fine as human hair, neat and
sculpted as the mother’s breast,
and at the center: her luminous eggs.

Here is the brief imprint of life.
The wonder of a mother bird’s
skills, all the timing just right,
her chicks’ complete belief

that their grim orange beaks
would be filled and they
would persist as surely
as mornings in May.





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