Monday, December 23, 2013

Christmas Sparrow by Billy Collins

Well, this particular cat never caught anything but a bowl of Science Diet.  Catfish, lying on a plastic bag from my favorite clothing store ( doing research for me on a new cat toy from Amazon.  He has a plastic fetish (goes crazy over any kind of plastic...loves to lie on it and crawl into bags...).  He gave this toy five paws up because it held his attention for over five minutes.  Tee-hee...  He's a whopping 25 pounds.  I have 6 cats and he's the only fat, lazy one.  Go figure.  
Enjoy this awesome poem.  I heard it on public radio this morning.   xo

Christmas Sparrow

by Billy Collins

The first thing I heard this morning
was a rapid flapping sound, soft, insistent—

wings against glass as it turned out
downstairs when I saw the small bird
rioting in the frame of a high window,
trying to hurl itself through
the enigma of glass into the spacious light.

Then a noise in the throat of the cat
who was hunkered on the rug
told me how the bird had gotten inside,
carried in the cold night
through the flap of a basement door,
and later released from the soft grip of teeth.

On a chair, I trapped its pulsations
in a shirt and got it to the door,
so weightless it seemed
to have vanished into the nest of cloth.

But outside, when I uncupped my hands,
it burst into its element,
dipping over the dormant garden
in a spasm of wingbeats
then disappeared over a row of tall hemlocks.

For the rest of the day,
I could feel its wild thrumming
against my palms as I wondered about
the hours it must have spent
pent in the shadows of that room,
hidden in the spiky branches
of our decorated tree, breathing there
among the metallic angels, ceramic apples, stars of yarn,
its eyes open, like mine as I lie in bed tonight
picturing this rare, lucky sparrow
tucked into a holly bush now,
a light snow tumbling through the windless dark.


From Mr. Collins' wonderful newest book, "Aimless Love".

Support poets.  Buy poetry!!!!


Erfan said...

Hi Marion. I have been a silent reader and admirer of your blog for long. I live in a far far place almost close of the axis of evil with no access to all the fancy poetry collections you have access to.I just wanted to break the long silence, thank you for sharing the poems you like and the amazing photos you take. I wish you wonderful holidays and Merry Christmas.

Marion said...

Thank you, Erfan. Merry Christmas to you, too. I know I often take for granted my poetry collection, but I'm happy to share it. It's a collection that has taken me over 40+ years to put together and I'm very grateful for all of my books and for my freedom. I appreciate your comment. It made my day. Blessings to you!! xo

Karen said...

Thanks for this, Marion. Aimless Love was my oly Christmas request. I can't wait to dip in.
After reading Erfan's comment, I realize how blessed we are here to have access to art and freedom.

Merry Christmas to you, your cats, and your lovely family.

Marion said...

You're welcome, Karen. I was fortunate (overjoyed) to get an Advance Reader's Copy of "Aimless Love". Talk about luck?! It's an amazing book and I hope Santa gets your copy to you. Merry Christmas to you, too, Karen. xo

Kelly said...

Love the poem AND love the photo of Catfish! (sweet kitty)

Love to you, my friend, and Merry Christmas (it can never be said too often!)!

Marion said...

Thanks, Kelly. Love and Blessings right back at you. xo

Serena said...

Love that poem, and Catfish makes the perfect illustration for it. He's a cutie, with a personality to match.

Have a wonderful Christmas, darling Princess Dragonfly.:)