Yesterday's clouds

caused yesterday's grackles

to sit high amongst winter's dead

branches, as if waiting

after another heart test

to attack us as we walked underneath

their gospel of screams, undeniable.

But, if not for the grackles

today's blue skies and sunshine

would not call me to clean

the bird bath, scattering

squirrels, small sparrows, wrens,

even bold blue jays

with my new clumsiness.

From my window, even the grackles

shared the bird feeder so politely

it was pleasing to watch, to refill

both water and seed, so all could

partake, a pristine scene,

a communion of sorts

where there is no loss.

Changed only by the arrival

of one lone male cardinal,

so confident and red, as the afternoon

shadows cast long slivers of light

through my broken fence that bothers

my neighbors more than me, more than

the grackles, gone with their shimmery

shrouds of such elegance.

This unfolding of Spring is worth

the price I pay, a pittance,

for moments behind hundred year old

glass window panes that have seen

much, much worse over the years,

so I find myself grateful, knowing

if not for the grackles,

my spirit would be the poorer.

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