Saturday, May 18, 2013

Birthday Songs

And then the bird, unhurried, as though filled
with a fragrance to which it must make some reply, lifts
its small, soft head, and begins

to sing.

                                                                                           Mary Oliver: What Do We Know

                                                      Birthday Songs

                                                      I dress in the dark
                                                      and come forth
                                                      into birdsong
                                                      netting the morning;

                                                      my son's voice from canyons
                                                      states away;

                                                      notes from the piano in F
                                                      my daughter plays;

                                                      a child’s arms around and chin
                                                      on my shoulders;
                                                      love motions
                                                      on my birthday

                                                      as sun slats
                                                      just beginning to angle
                                                      across the time rings 

                                                      of the oak table--
                                                      our lives 
                                                      held in mystery
                                                      breaking open

                                                      into song
                                                      just for the singing.

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