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By Lauren Scharhag

On the weekends, I sit and watch

the birds come and go at the feeder,

The spill of shells and millet

across balcony plank boards.

I am learning their songs.

I now know, without looking,

when the cardinal has come,

even when I am across the house,

my hands in dishwater,

writing out a stack of bills,

dressing for work,

conjuring his red brilliance.

Lauren Scharhag is an award-winning writer of fiction and poetry. She is the author of Under Julia, The Ice Dragon, The Winter Prince, West Side Girl & Other Poems, and the co-author of The Order of the Four Sons series. Her poems and short stories have appeared in over seventy journals and anthologies, including Voice of Eve, Isacoustic, The American Journal of Poetry, and Gambling the Aisle. She lives on Florida’s Emerald Coast. To learn more about her work, visit:

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