Wishing a Happy New Year to all my friends and family. May this coming year bring us health and happiness, and may we learn to let go of the old year as we ring in the new!
For the New Year
On this first day of the new year, may all
the birds I remember coming to the two
feeders we hung from the branches of the
Russian Olive near that long ago window
gather again here under this dawning sky
to enjoy suet, sunflower seeds, and millet.
I can’t recall the name of the store where we
got the bags of birdseed, but I do recall the
pleasure you took in filling the feeders,
defeating the wily squirrels, and our rare
glimpse of a red fox running alongside the
tracks behind the house as we watched the
constant fluttering of sparrows and finches.
And then came the flickers, those gorgeous
visitors who suddenly blessed our yard with
their red caps and brilliant speckled plumage.
On this first day of the new year, I’m feeding
too, pecking at seeds of the past, discarding
hulls that fell to lie on the snow or in the winter
pale grass, my time caught in bird-time as I
celebrate both what was and what is, winging
forward through those years to this life now,
the one where a flock of cardinals darts across
the road to light on the barren limbs of a family
of scrub oak—small scarlet harbingers whose
wings raise the dead brown leaves still clinging
to their cold branches into the dawning light
of this new year, ringing in hope.
© 2020 Penny Harter