Monday, April 27, 2009

The Mockingbird

A mockingbird was in the neighbor’s spruce tree
last night, and it was confused about what time
it was, because it was singing every tune it knew.

It went through its whole repertoire and then started
all over again. It was hot out, unusually so for an April
night, so I had my window open. Naturally, I couldn’t sleep

with that racket going on. So, I got out the bird book
and tried to follow along. He sang the song of the cow bird,
the cat bird, the cardinal, the cedar wax wing. He

whistled the tune of the Baltimore oriole, the turtle dove,
the mourning dove, and even the squawk of the grackle.
Then he imitated the ruby throated warbler, the barn wren,

the wood thrush. I thought I might have even heard a hoot
or two somewhere in the mix. This continued on all night,
until the sun was well up in the morning sky. Then I guess

he went to sleep, the bastard. So if I nod off a little later on,
and my eyes look bleary and bloodshot, if my nerves seem
frazzled and I inject black coffee right into my veins, well…


  1. I am in waiting to see if my Mockingbird comes back this year. He would start at about 11pm and continue all night long, right outside my window. Loud, very loud. Obviously after weeks and weeks he must have finally found a mate. I did a lot of research on my fellow, I made myself learn to like him or else I was going to shoot him! Shooting him is illegal!
    Hopefully your guy will find a mate faster than mine did!

  2. They are aggressive as all hell too.

    Watch out!!!


  3. Justfly- I remembered yours as I was writing the poem. They can be annoying...

    Bobby- I've seen that. Sometimes they will dive bomb my dogs when they are in the back yard.

  4. Xanadu didn't read this or she would have caught me- a Baltimore oriole is a baseball team, not a bird. I feel SO stupid...