I know I will not catch myself singing in the rain
    with that white-throated sparrow that’s been
    at it since daybreak, quite like the broken siren
    that has blared seven long blasts at Fukushima.

    Spring’s bird warbles in a still dead forest,
    the plant’s live warning bellows shrieks of doom.
    The blossoms have opened at last, pollens fall
    like elfin marbles brightening blackened barks!

    Temblor-struck Sendai rushes out of wanton debris,
    to cower at the ashloams dumped by burial details
    of wind wafted from the station as grand coroner
    spraying yet another pollen killing all that is green,

    all that still breathes on earth, in air, water, fire,
    or lingering spring puddles. The sparrow sings
    unceasingly in the rain, but infants have puled
    their stifled whimpers where it, too, is spring

    at last in brackish swamp lands left by Hokusai’s
    wave that has ghoulishly leaped into life
    from a forgotten scroll to wash away remnants
    of Nagasaki and all remonstrances left of Hiroshima.

    —Albert B. Casuga

  2. When I read Dave’s entry today, I think of the Indian jujube fruits that I see heaped in the markets in Chennai. These fruits are red in colour and are feasted by sparrows that shed their timidity to have their share of the berry.

    Here is the flower of jujube tree:http://www.flowersofindia.net/catalog/slides/Ber.html
    Here are the berries: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Ziziphus_mauritiana_ripped.jpg

    And this what I wrote

    The Indian Jujube

    younger sibling of red maple?
    puff of waxy yellow flowers
    that become succulent berries
    the white throat of a sparrow
    red as it swallows the fruit

  3. Villanelle of the Red Maple

    Like a question surfacing in the mind of winter,
    at last the red maple blossoms are open.
    Rich red anthers, puffs of orange pollen–

    they are why the white-throated sparrow sings
    without stopping in the rain. How does such love happen
    like a question surfacing in the mind of winter?

    I trail my hand in shallow water, and dredge up
    questions no one can answer. I have no weapon
    against the richness of red, the puffs of orange pollen.

    The lover asks, *What need for questions,
    when the soul has met its answer?* Fire might dampen,
    doubt flicker in the mind’s unfinished winter.

    The bird sings its pure white carol in the leaves,
    singing, singing– as if the heart knew no other burden,
    only the richness of red, the tenderness of orange pollen.

    I let it sing, I let you come to me as you have all these years.
    I had been tired, I had been lonely. I wanted to open
    like a question meeting its answer at the end of winter:
    heart rich with red, its joys stippled like puffs of orange pollen.

    ~ Luisa A. Igloria
    04 12 2011

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