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.