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Five pair of Meadowlarks
pace beneath the empty birdfeeders
this chilly, breezy morning.
Ground feeders, they never fly up to the feeders,
but wait
impatiently
until I get out to scatter seed.
Today they seem quarrelsome,
facing off in pairs,
raised tall as they can
on tenuous legs,
cobalt yellow breast
to breast,
then flying up at each other,
sometimes taking a tumble
back on the ground.

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Two seem particularly
contentious, confronting the Red-Winged Blackbirds,
who usually are the feisty ones.

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Even after
I deliver their breakfast,
they continue this behavior.
Watching them, I surprise myself, chuckling—
some laugh-out-loud sunshine
on another cloudy day.

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