A small thudding
in the room. One of
the cats is staring
at the window.
One of the daily woodpeckers
is on the feeder and it’s quiet enough
to hear the bird — can’t tell if it’s
the male or the female — slamming
its beak through the grid into the suet
over and over again.
I get close enough to see it’s the
male and his partner’s out on the
farther feeder doing the same.
I don’t know much of them for certain, of course.
I know their colors and what the books
tell me they mean. I know there’s one
of each human-gendered example out there
and they come every day like this to feed.
I don’t know if they are a mating pair
or even if it might be different pairs
switching off all season long.
I know both cats are fascinated by them
and I might be too. I don’t know
why it matters or why I become anxious
on the rare days they do not visit.
I know that even when I’m dead broke
I keep suet and seed cakes in full supply.
I don’t know where the money to pay the bills
is coming from
but I know two cats and two birds
who stay satisfied
and when the fat gets low outside,
I know how fast I step into the snow and cold
to fill it up again.