Spring Learning

This poem was written last spring as streets fell silent and we peered out warily. It was one of very few creative pieces that I was able to finish in 2020 in between teaching on-line and walking many shielded lengths of the allotment lane behind our house while the birds were going about their spring business as usual. I’m pleased that it now appears in Corona Chronicles Necessary Narratives in Uncertain Times, published by DIO Press, New York. Thanks to editors Kenneth Fashing-Varner, Steven Bickmore, Danica Hays, P.G. Schrader, David Lee Carlson and Dorothea Anagostopoulos for selecting it.

Spring Learning


We overschedule our days on

shared screens, heads disappearing

into false places. Encircled faces

lurk unseen behind initials. Voices are switched on

or muted. Conversations become concentrated.

Staccato chat replaces warm chatter

with hard-to-read silences punctuated

by emojis, fixing and unfixing smiles.

Tears flow, virtual hands go up or

stay down but are rarely tentative,

spontaneous, waving.


Outside in a bright spring fluffed-up blue tits 

negotiate the evening birdbath queue for

their place in a pecking order behind loud sparrow brood.

A young blackbird’s saffron-rimmed eye stares suspiciously

at what might be seeds before he bounces off to

learn to bend his worm-listening head lawn-wards.

Fledgling robins flit back-forth between

turned soil and sheltered hawthorn territory.

A glow of speckles, needy yellow beaks yearning

red breasts not earned yet. Later a hidden tawny owl

haunts pear tree dark, waits for a possible

mate’s echo, sends a shiver through

pre-dawn with her unexpected hooting.

Sue Dymoke

If you would like to know more about The Corona Chronicles or to order an e-copy go to https://www.diopress.com/product-page/corona-chronicles-ebook


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