Birdhouse by Kate Marshall Flaherty

Poem title: Birdhouse Poet name: Kate Marshall Flaherty Poem: My dad has ten hummingbird feeders suspended all over the farm in crabapples, pines,  glass orbs of red sugar-water, some shaped as strawberries, some teardrops—  the wasps cling to their clear straws, so he put up  tiny mesh traps, to keep his flurried friends safe  he no longer puts delphinium in the window after the one mother hit the glass—  if he could, he would make a birdhouse  for these sweet smeary blurs of birds,  he’d weave the web-strands himself, lift the mouse fur and bits of fluff, milkweed silk  and shimmering dust; if he could, he’d make a curtain of spun-gold filaments to guard the fairy entrance,  to keep our bees and weather, but make it gauzy enough to see the pond and grandkids through—  if he could, he’d make safe the place of mom’s diminishings, that hover,   blur her wings of memory moving in a way we know but cannot see—he’d make a house to  hold her, suspended and clear as the feeders shining in the sun.  End of Poem. Credits and bio: Copyright © Kate Marshall Flaherty Kate Marshall Flaherty’s latest poetry books are Radiant, Inanna Publications, Reaching V, Guernica Editions and Stone Soup, Quattro Books. She was shortlisted for the Mitchell Prize for Poetry 2021, Tifferet Journal’s Poetry Prize 2020, Arc’s Poem of the Year 2019 and Exile’s Gwendolyn MacEwen Poetry Prize 2018. She’s been published in numerous journals, including The Literary Review of Canada, Vallum, Room Magazine, Malahat Review, Grain Magazine, Saranac Review, Trinity Review, EVENT, Antigonish Review, Windsor Review, and Descant. Her collaborative performance poetry video-poems have won honourable mentions in international awards such as the Los Angeles and World Poetry Symposium video-poem prizes. She guides StillPoint Writing Workshops and types up spontaneous “Poems Of the Extraordinary Moment” (P.O.E.M.s) for people for charity. See her performance poetry at katemarshallflaherty