Asters — A Poem

An artfully altered photo looking up through the leafy stems and pink blooms of New England Asters.
“New England Asters” — C.Birde, 9/21


thick ribbed

with insect song;


stretched taut

with cloud,

thinned blue;


soft wrenching,

     v i s c e r a l.

I think of you.

Small birds

sway clinging

to seed heads,



I think of



— C.Birde, 9/21

Queen Oak — An Image

An artfully altered photo looking up the trunk of a great oak tree and through its leafy limbs.
“Queen Oak Tree” — C.Birde, 9/21

“I have written

your name

in a hundred million


Blade of grass…

Curl of breeze…

The underneath

of a white oak’s leaves…”

Her wink scattered

beams of light.

“Are you

l o o k i n g?”

— C.Birde, 9/21

Freedom — A Poem

An artfully altered photo of a rain-slicked wildflower garden in a 100-plus-year-old suburb.
“Garden of Rain” — C.Birde, 9/21

This morning,

at breakfast,

clad in green smoke,

Humming-girl paid

a visit and darted

between the fizz and

drizzle of gray rain,


Mid-air, she paused –

suggestion of form

and wings; an aura,

a blur –

to observe us encased

in our glass-walled


We think ourselves

sovereign. Free.


In a breath and a wink,

she was


— C.Birde, 9/21

Stew — A Dream

An artfully altered photo of a yellow-enameled cast-iron Dutch oven, filled with shredded paper, on a stove top.
“Stew” — C.Birde, 8/21


2 c. vegetable broth

1 c. brown lentils

2 T. extra-virgin olive oil

1 onion, thinly sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 t. ground cumin

½ t. ground coriander

½ t. ground turmeric

salt & fresh-ground black pepper, to taste

1 manuscript, shredded


On full, dark night in open-format kitchen with streamlined, brushed-steel appliances – open all of porch’s double French doors in invitation to West Wind to pour over slate floor.

Place oval Dutch oven with tight-fitting lid over medium heat; add olive oil; heat until shimmering, ≈ 3 minutes. Add onion & garlic; sauté until onion softens & becomes translucent, stirring occasionally, ≈ 3-5 minutes. Add lentils & spices; stir well to combine; allow lentils to toast slightly, ≈ 2 minutes. Add vegetable broth; stir until well incorporated.

Carefully add shredded manuscript. Observe any stray words: Autumnal; wind-slippered; irrelevance. Consider meaning. Incorporate all slim strips with other ingredients; bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; cover & allow to stew indefinitely.

While waiting, notice Moon’s reflection in countless glass panes; listen to silence; water plants.

— C.Birde, 8/21

Unnecessary — A Dream

An artfully altered photo of mirror-imaged trees, hedge, reflections to offer a dreamlike, psychedelic image.
“Unnecessary” — C.Birde, 8/21


before I

before I can

   comprehend the


nature of

nature of this

   funerary scene &


extend my

extend my offer

   of service …

The scenario, in its entirety –

options, challenges, solutions –

have all efficiently been

noted, discussed, addressed

with no need of my aid &

I can

I can only

I can only stand &


from a distance

of un-necessity.

— C.Birde, 8/21