Photo Credit Jasmine Rain Hyder
Bouquet of Birds
Annette Marie Hyder
They are fat and cozy flowers
blooming on the winter trees.
puff out their chests
and sing —
float notes of joy into the sky.
I say, “How do they stay warm?
What makes them preen
and sing and bloom?”
He says, “They must be thinking of you.”
Many birds dotting the leaf-empty branches profusely
This image never fails to make me happy — small birds in the midst of winter decorating the bare branches
of cold trees with their plumage and their song.
They are winter flowers. Their feathers are petals and their song is
pollen carried on the breeze disseminating not plant DNA, but joy.
They are only a handful of fluff and hollow bones and yet they weather conditions most severe. Thinking of these birds reminds me of The Sermon on the Mount. If you are not familiar with it, here is an excerpt:
from the book of Matthew (I think it’s interesting that the exhortation,
“Do not be anxious” is given three times in this section):
New American Standard Bible
“25 Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what
you shall eat or what you shall drink, nor about your body, what you
shall put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than
clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap
nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you
not of more value than they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can
add one cubit to his own span of life?
28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the
field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin; 29 yet I tell you,
even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But
if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and
tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O
men of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What
shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’
32 For the Gentiles seek all these things; and your heavenly Father
knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom and his
righteousness, and all shall be yours as well.
34 Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be
anxious for itself. Let the day’s own trouble be sufficient for the
New American Standard Bible
Matthew 10: 29-31
29“Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father.
30“But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
31“So do not fear; you are more valuable than many sparrows.
Links of Interest:
Faculty expert, J. Michael Reed, professor
of biology at Tufts University answers the question, “Why don’t all birds fly south for the winter?” Also, “How do the ones that winter over in the frigid north survive?”
Want to read an old anecdote from the Kabbalah about a bird turning into a fruit? Check out The Tears of Things.
And here’s a link to a Sermon on the Mount Discussion.