2019 Spring Contest Winner: 2nd Place, Members Only


by Carol Lantz

We expect them to be there

in all the right places,

just as they were last spring,

just as they’ve always been—

finches, warblers, wrens…

teasing us with wing bars

streaked breasts

eye rings.


But do we stop to ponder

how far the birds have flown,

the hazards they’ve encountered

to twitter in our roses

and flit above our lawns?

Probably we don’t.

Probably we point to silhouettes

to flashes of bright color

to round or forked tails,

then satisfied with “maybe

it’s a Phoebe”

we move on.


Poet bio

Carol Lantz has been an OPA member for many years. She lives beside the forest in the Willamette Valley of Oregon and is a keen observer of nature.

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