Meadowlark

A few days ago
I was out for an early-morning walk.
Sunlight struck everywhere
on droplets of dewy greening grass.
Songbirds were waking
and singing prettily.
It was a happy moment,
made happier by a
strikingly sweet, clear,
high-pitched melody
new to me.
I thought it was a bird
new to the neighborhood,
perhaps migrating through,
and began searching tree tops
to see it.
Two sang this song,
one, fainter, echoing the other.
I spotted one atop a high wire
and another in a Hackberry tree
off in the pasture.
It looked like a brown bird
but when I walked as non-threateningly close
as I could,
the one on the wire
flew away.
I kept listening and following,
but could never get close enough
for a good look.
I heard this pretty song
for several days,
any time I went outside.
And then one afternoon
as I sat writing on the front porch,
I heard the sound and
smiled to myself.
It sounded like it was singing,
“We’re teasing her.”
The note for “teasing”
was higher, a cheery-sounding lilt.
I looked up
and saw the songster.
It was the Meadowlark!
I laughed out loud.
I have been enjoying the sweet whistle
of the Meadowlark all winter,
but I had never heard this song.
And it comes from
someone in the neighborhood!
Had I not been listening carefully?
Do they not sing it in the winter?
Ah…perhaps spring’s mating call?

“We’re teasing her,”
is, I realize,
not what they’re saying;
rather, it is my
anthropocentric
interpretation of Meadowlark’s song.
But I feel delightedly
teased
every time I hear it—
and take any connection
with nature
as gift.