Magnolia Madness — Bet Briggs

My magnolia tree is going mad!
what delicious blossoming:
on branches bare a month ago
this blush, first flush of Spring,
on limbs unburdened by their weight
not buds, but birds, burgeoning:
rose-pink breasted, moon-white crested
fledglings and doting pairs,
there’s no mistaking them:
instant families of galahs
noiselessly in celebration
of becoming and of being.
Much more than surprise
their blithe presence
is a kind of offering.
Brave community of innocents
in the shelter of each other
they cluster in their peace.
Nothing startles them or stains
their gentle rush to radiance.

Only vagrant winds soft and rough
ruffle their feathered joy,
enticing whispers of call
and restlessness so tender
flight seems imminent
and my need clear: keep watch
and catch the joy before it flies.
Yet all is hover and hold,
time and birds fold wings
and the only flight is fall:
magnolia moultings floating down
quilting garden bed and lawn;
and soon above on branches stirring,
noiseless as before appear new wings
leaf-bud green and more enduring.
But oh! that pink-white loveliness
before the green, that bloom of birds,
that brief but shared delirium.
The world and I need such madness.

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