Salat Al Maghrib*

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Blessed are the birds

grackle bullies shriek,

scuffle over sunflower seeds,

muscling away patient goldfinches

cardinals wait on bare oak branches

*

Blessed are the dry oak leaves,

pale as deerskin

worn winter thin

that shiver and tumble,

grounded by bitter March wind

*

Blessed is the wind

sweeping in from the North

Only ice fairies fly

above the frosted pines

*

Blessed are the pines

moaning adagios

windswept violas and bassoons

harmonize at twilight

*

Blessed is the twilight

sapphire and steel

calligraphy of branches

writing the ballad of night

—————————————

*Islamic sunset prayer

Bird Feeder, Briefly

 

bird wildlife no person nature

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Three days ago, we hung a bird feeder from our balcony. The first day, we had no customers.  By day two, the birds had discovered this new, no-work source of food.  The sparrows and finches came in hoards.  My husband said, “This is better than TV!”

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That same day, we moved the feeder to the corner of the balcony so the wasted seeds would fall away from the neighbor’s deck below us.  The birds were going through the seeds so fast that I ordered two more bags and a suet cake.

We had some special visitors: a redwing blackbird, and a downy woodpecker came by.  Our downstairs neighbor to the left installed a gigantic tube feeder on day three.  The birds told all their friends.

On day four, I got an email from the manager of our apartment complex.  We are asking everyone to take down their bird feeders.  They cause a mess and draw unwanted pests.

Down came the bird feeder.  In its place we hung our wind chimes. I canceled the order for more seed and suet.  I cleaned the bird poop off the railing.

We’ll miss watching the bird show out our glass door.  Now we’ll have to get our bird watching at the college pond and friends’ houses.  Too bad.

selective focus photo of downy woodpecker on tree trunk

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