Christmas At The Feeder

Here’s to fortune and health
for all the downy woodpeckers
I’ve ever seen on my feeder

It’s almost Christmas and I feel nothing
but fear for myself as I wish good cheer
to every last feathered one of them

Before they disappear forever
into the next mass extinction
may they feast and be merry

all the way to the end (and
may the squirrels I accidentally support as well
have a twinkle in their eyes as they pass)

It doesn’t much feel like Christmas to me
but when I see the animals I’m reminded
that part of the world

thinks they’ll be talking to each other
at midnight on Christmas Day
and they’ll be saying calming things

about some baby or another born to save us
If we make it to the Second Coming
I’m sure there won’t be many animals 

left to talk about it
So for now I’ll encourage them to eat
and smile at their heads bobbing in and out

because as the song says
it don’t feel much like Christmas time
To me it’s more like Good Friday

and grief’s darkness and I’m thinking
we won’t make it to Easter 
and the stone will sit there unmoved

with a raven and a dove perched on top
for a few seconds before they topple
into the dust 

Of all the myths we’ve lived by
the one I have the least faith in
is the one that taught us to think death

while awful was impermanent
so complacency in the face of extinction
was a rational state of mind

The downy woodpeckers fly in
and eat when they can and when they go
they’re gone

and it doesn’t feel like Christmas
or hope or belief or even joy 
will stick around for long

once they’re gone for good

About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

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