The finches indulge in sweet gluttony
at the feeders this morning.
Their tawny and golden breasts
are puffed up against freezing air –
giving them the appearance of innocence and soft feathery sea foam against a dazzling blue sky.
From my spot, behind the kitchen window, I know they are not so dainty as their small fluttering hearts would have us believe.
Each determined movement
belies a seasoned winged-archer’s purpose: To perch, take aim with arrow sharp beak and perfectly strike the gold of seeds and sweet suet.
They pause only to sing, and then draw back their bow-like feathered forms again.
Here is the stuff
that survival is built on:
the courage to fly into each cold morning;
the grace to live in humble beauty;
the singular will to breathe and be,
and the instinct and desire to do it over and over and over –
because that’s how we move forward in time.
~ martha lee phelps (r.2017)