National Poetry Month–and poem, First Day of Spring

Yes, I know it’s not officially the first day of Spring (see Vernal Equinox post), but it is the first day of National Poetry Month. So, how to celebrate the gift of poetry for a month? NLAPW Poem of the Week will bring you poems by our members once a week, so that’s a start. And, if you’d like to receive more poems, some of which will happen to be by men, you can subscribe to the Academy of American Poets Poem-a-day. You can donate to your favorite poetry cause ($5 will do nicely), write a poem a day, encourage a child to write, download poetry books to your reader, or carry around an actual-real-life-on-paper tattered anthology of your favorite sonnets–whatever you do, you will be helping to keep poetry alive. And that is cause to celebrate, no foolin’.

Treanor Baring
Poetry Editor
1st Vice President

First Day of Spring

Flocks flutter in on ragged edges,
winter’s tattering wing. Don’t pay
the cold any mind as wind freezes
tears pulled from your eyes.
Close them. Listen to the celebration-

Exhausted voices’ jubilant declaration
“We are here. We made it. We are here!”
Redwing blackbird males tricked out,
black satin tuxedos with red/gold trimmed
epaulets. Inky blue speckled starlings

wheeze and rock, toes clamped to
tips, poplar wands making magic
with unseen sun. Buds swell this gray
day. Robin males chortle and plaintive
3 note melodies of grosbeaks,

black velvet jackets, white waistcoats and
a dash of scarlet at the throat. Cardinals whistle.
Chickadees three note enticements.Threaded
through sparrow arguments and catastrophe.
Wheeling gulls spoked in sky cry. Silhouetted
hungry hawks, tails a rustier red to catch

the eye of a lone female. Takes her time.
Slaloms through snow flakes without
moving her wings at all. Gusts shred,
swirl winter’s feathers.
Spring bustles in.

Rachael Ikins
Central New York Branch, NY

“Ask the Girl Arts….because girls can do anything!”


  1. Lois Batchelor Howard says:

    Hello, Rachael… I know we haven’t met, but I want you to know I sent a Thank You for your poem yesterday and now. I don’t think yesterday’s went through. I just love your poem about Spring. All of the bird descriptions are wonderful. Extremely picturesque. I feel as if I’m seeing all of this through your eyes. Thank you for your talent.
    Lois Howard, Palm Springs Branch

  2. oh, my gosh! This has been happening in my back yard all week! I have filled my bird feeders nearly every day at $50 a barrel of seed!
    But there’s one thing I have that the poem does’t — a male wild turkey waddling up and down the yard, pecking at feed (and old fruit) on the ground.