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Feeding the Blue Jays
Emily Strauss


The chickadees love seeds—
Sunflower especially but also
The tiny white ones, grass,
Pine or weeds,
When I run out I try other grains—
Millet, wheat, oats, corn, barley,
Buckwheat, throwing handfuls
At their usual snow bank
Or holding the food in my palm
Where they land, cocking their heads
Carefully searching, picking
Through, rejecting them all, no
Sunflower seeds, until I finally
Toss the whole mess out
And watch the blue jays
Fork through the snow
To gobble every tiny bit,
Even old boiled rice
Buried in the white drifts.

© by Emily Strauss.
Used with the author’s permission.



Emily Strauss has an M.A. in English, but is self-taught in poetry, which she has written since college. More than 550 of her poems appear in a wide variety of online venues and in anthologies, in the U.S. and abroad. The natural world of the American West is Emily’s usual framework; she also considers the narratives of people and places around her. Emily is a retired teacher and lives in Oregon with a small dog and a black cat.


Post New Comment:
Love this poem. I watch the birds in my yard religiously every morning. Cardinals are my sunflower seed gourmets. Jays are the picky ones here in Florida.
Posted 12/13/2011 10:33 AM

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