A brown cardinal baby
nestled in the crook
of our back porch trumpet vine
invisible until her big red dad returned
again and again
bearing grubs to nourish
and maybe soothe
after her important launch.
Later in Target
a mom scouring aisles
her own fledgling just new in a dorm
the store shelves
bare of what she really sought:
Courage for a newly flown almost-man
His deepening voice still soft around the edges
What can she do?
Settle for a really good pillow
or favorite snacks, deep breaths
the vein in her forehead
carrying the same tension as the frantic
to-and-fro of a parent bird
Just utter faith it will be enough
while there they go, strong and confident
like we’ve always believed
yet never quite been ready for.
Do birds feel it too?