January Robins (52 Make-Up, Week 1)

January Robins (52 Make-Up, Week 1) January 6, 2020

In 2017 I tried to give myself a challenge of creating a new piece of art — a poem, story, song, photo, or other bit of visual art — each week. I got about halfway through the year before I was overcome by events. (It was not a good year.) I’m going to try it again this year, so here’s a poem to start it off. The accompanying photo is from a similar but month long “Fun A Day” project in January 2016.

January Robins

walking the dog around the school down the street
we turn a corner and
startle a flock of robins
Robins! On the 5th of January!

ornithologists, now, will tell me that’s not special
that the American robin follows the 37 degree isotherm
flocking in the winter, seeking out late berries

but I am a magician, a poet in the realm of acts
and what I see means what I say that it means

this sign of spring
so early in the year
a week before my 50th birthday
I declare it a portent

that I head not into autumn years
but into a new spring


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