A few days back, the stream barbled and tribbed,
it sang staccato sliding under Moose Bridge
as the summer warblers, all peach and honeyed.
Today I can’t hear the water over the dead heads.
Prick-your-finger blackened, thimble porcupine
dead heads, where purple cone flowers
used to rocket from their beds.
I could trim them. I could cut back
what has died. New growth might bloom.
I could dig out their roots to steep them--
a tea to keep away winter chills.
Ah, but-- there is a bird. He is pecking the dried seeds
ever so slyly. He doesn’t want me to see him
grabbing his happy meal, glad for something
quick and easy, his feathers dark as gray stalk.
What do I chose? Hard work with glove and blade
to remove what has died. Or let it go?
Birds, and winter’s ice will do their work
Spring will come again on it’s own.