Thursday, June 10, 2010

June 10: Cardinal Love

The last lines of a favorite bird poem, "The Cardinal," by Henry Carlile:

In the bar's dark I think of him.
There are no cardinals here.

Only a woman in a red dress.

And now when I see cardinals I think of that poem, with its wonderful, racy final image. I thought of it today, in fact, when a pair of cardinals was at my office window feeder. I looked up from my desk to catch the male cardinal passing a seed to the female. A simple, romantic gesture, almost like flirting. Then he flew off, leaving her to eat alone, her rouge-red bill bright against her drab khaki plumage and the black sunflower seeds.

Red feathers, rouged beak--
there's just something sensual
about cardinals.

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