Aware of Birds Missing

MoonValleyWhat do you notice in winter stillness?
Does the stillness allow you to be still,
Also? Or does it make you want to move
In ways that keep you from noticing?

The honeysuckle vines are disappearing
From the fence rows, the wild rose bushes
Rooted out like kudzu by backhoes
Trained to pasture and emptiness.

Even at daybreak, there is no sound
Of bird call, of chickadee, of cardinal or wren,
No flash of red in the fallen branches
Of sycamore trees near the low water crossing.

You put this in a list of things you liked
About me: “Aware of birds missing.”
The sound of missing things is louder
Than the machinery of taut barbwire fencing.

The sound of missing things arrives
In my days like autumn and the dying
Of the green into gold, the same time
That you came into my life.

–Shaun Perkins


3 thoughts on “Aware of Birds Missing”

  1. This is so strange because almost all of our snow has melted off and I was watching for birds the other day, but I didn’t see any. The only birds I see is when I go down to the breakwater and there are a few silent seagulls. I don’t know how they can live in this freezing cold!

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