Little sparrows
are back
at their feeding ground
in my front yard,
chirping their merry winter song
in the Hackberry and Arborvitae,
flitting branch to branch.
A flock of crows
is interested in something
on the prairie
across the road.
A Red-tail Hawk
gliding on the wind
flies toward me
at exactly the same moment
I see
a flock of thousands
of Red-Winged Blackbirds
cascade up out of a field of red maize,
disappear as they turn
then appear again like a wave
with the next turn.
My heart takes flight too
and I hear myself laugh
right out loud
at the immense relief and delight
that they’re home,
that we’re settling into winter
with its bracing, clean, cold air,
its black, clear, brilliant star-lit sky
and sunny days
with cheerful birds.