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Sarah Gilbert

After releasing the downy woodpecker
trapped in our neighbors’ garage
I watch its rapid transformation
from ragged frantic hysteria
to collected pecking
at elderberry deadwood
and fruitful feeding at our birdseed
each feather in place.

Should I find myself
beating with determined doomed focus
against a closed window
not believing in glass
may God fling open a door
cup my still-flailing dazed self
in restraining hands
turn and show me
that large portal
let go
that I might fly
toward light.

© by Sarah Gilbert.
Used with the author's permission.


Sarah Gilbert lives in Appleton, WI. A retired La Leche League Leader and homeschooling mom, she serves as regional VP for the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets and coordinates monthly poetry readings at a local cafe. Her dormant poetry writing was awakened in 2000 by the second of four (so far) Lynch Syndrome hereditary cancers. Sarah also weaves, gardens and makes a fine lap for her three cats.

Post New Comment:
As you can see by the many comments your poem is a gift to all of us ~ thank you for the inspiration... Judy
Posted 08/22/2013 04:27 PM
That is just beautiful. All of it. "...not believing in glass"—what a fabulous line! Thank you, Sarah.
Posted 08/22/2013 01:35 PM
Larry Schug:
That's the goal--to fly toward light. Thanks for pointing us in the right direction in a beautiful way.
Posted 08/22/2013 10:52 AM
Ralph Murre:
Fine, fine work. A privilege to read.
Posted 08/22/2013 09:23 AM
Perfect start for my day. A beautiful image to carry with me. Thank you.
Posted 08/22/2013 09:13 AM
Ah yes against a closed window / not believing in glass / Sounds way too familiar.
Posted 08/22/2013 09:00 AM
a gentle and lovely start to the day..thanks, Sarah Sharon Auberle
Posted 08/22/2013 08:39 AM
ed werstein:
Excellent work, Sarah. Thank you.
Posted 08/22/2013 08:16 AM
Carol Hauer:
Beautiful! Thank you. I love the word "portal."
Posted 08/22/2013 08:12 AM
Maryann Hurtt:
Sarah, Thank you for showing so well the trick of flight!
Posted 08/22/2013 07:36 AM
Wonderfully stated. An uplifting poem to start this day. Thank you, Sarah. Marilyn Windau
Posted 08/22/2013 07:24 AM
This is absolutely beautiful. Well done!
Posted 08/22/2013 07:20 AM
Nice poem, Sarah! Merle Hazard
Posted 08/22/2013 07:15 AM
I love the poetry of one's own back yard and the lessons it can show. You've said it all with talent and sensitivity. Thanks.
Posted 08/22/2013 07:12 AM
Janet Leahy:
Fluid transition from the bird to self, lovely language. Thanks, Sarah.
Posted 08/22/2013 06:50 AM
"beating...against a closed window, not believing in glass"--how beautifully your words have captured me at various times in my life and how wonderfully they let me go. Thank you, Sarah.
Posted 08/22/2013 06:31 AM
beautiful poem, sarah. thank you.
Posted 08/22/2013 06:22 AM
Beautiful poem, Sarah.
Posted 08/22/2013 06:00 AM
Lovely. And so very true. Just what I needed this morning -- thanks!
Posted 08/22/2013 05:45 AM

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