My Cart 
Login 

Previous

Wildflowers
by
Siobhán Barry-Bratcher


Next
 
In the mornings when he passed my house
He helped himself to the wildflowers
I planted out front. 
My neighbor would yell at him
And, one day, when I caught him in the act
He looked straight ahead and kept walking
While he gripped the stolen bouquet behind his back 
In a tight fist, like any little kid would.
But he was an old man
And he only picked one kind of flower.
To quell my anger 
I imagined he had a wife
Who couldn’t leave the house
And those flowers 
Were the only bright spot in her day
Until, one evening
I saw he was the one
Who always sprinkled a handful of rice on the curb
To feed the birds.
After that, I didn’t mind
That he shared my flowers.


© by Siobhán Barry-Bratcher
Used with the author's permission.

 

Purchase a framed print of this poem.

Born in Brooklyn, New York in 1954, Siobhán Barry writes about everything because she believes there are no boring subjects. Irish figure skaters, city dwelling possums, Jerry Garcia’s artwork, recalcitrant old houses, and mornings in small towns are just a few of the topics she has covered in her poetry, prose, articles, and screenplays. Siobhán is the author of two books, Brushstrokes: A Work In Progress, a memoir about growing up in Brooklyn, and Golden, a young adult historical novel set in the late 1960s. She formerly co-hosted a spoken word series at the DeBaun Center for the Performing Arts on the campus of Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, New Jersey. Siobhán also plays bluegrass guitar and the Appalachian dulcimer. She lives in Hudson County, New Jersey.

 


New comments are closed for now.
penelope8:
Rice is not good for birds. If this old man knew that, then, shame on him. I believe he feeds the birds because he loves them, and he does not know.
Posted 05/03/2017 08:41 PM
joecot:
My first reaction is: feeding birds does not redeem the theft of flowers. Then again, to the author it does. And that's what makes the poem so interesting. A thought-provoking poem. Nicely done.
Posted 05/03/2017 12:23 PM
barbsteff:
I'm no sure that uncooked rice is good for birds. Seems that was the reason people were discouraged from throwing rice at weddings. It is a charming poem however - the goodness of the human spirit.
Posted 05/03/2017 11:22 AM
Michael:
I like the wisdom displayed in this poem as simple things get elevated to the status of the "profound."
Posted 05/03/2017 10:58 AM
cork:
I did not know that birds ate rice. Slainte.
Posted 05/03/2017 08:44 AM
Larry Schug:
Flowers traded for birds, a good poem for free. A good deal all around.
Posted 05/03/2017 08:40 AM
KevinArnold:
Ah some artistic ambiguity, especially with the title.
Posted 05/03/2017 03:12 AM


Contents of this web site and all original text and images therein are copyright © by Your Daily Poem. All rights reserved.
The material on this site may not be copied, reproduced, downloaded, distributed, transmitted, stored, altered, adapted,
or otherwise used in any way without the express written permission of the owner.