Grace Note for Late March

Evangeline West

Beaumont, Texas

March 28, 2019


I call this tiny fellow a “lit-up lemon drop.”

He’s really a male American goldfinch, Carduelis tristis,in full breeding plumage.

He’s been hanging around the bird feeder some days now, in all his glory.

Goldfinches winter here.

They visit our southeast Texas feeders all through the colder months,

in their unisex coats of gray.

By late February there are touches of yellow, in male and female alike.

March brings a little more yellow for the males.

Then they are all gone north, to their nesting zone.

To see a male radiantly outfitted like this is rare.

Whatever is making him linger, I’m grateful.

His black forehead is fitting.

He’s a serious fellow, intent on bulking up for the journey north,

which surely will be soon.

I don’t like how the cardinals bully him.

If he minds he doesn’t show it.

He just gives way, then returns to his feeding.

The only thing that seems to make him cringe is the raucous cry of the jay.

A jay will get your attention, that’s for sure.


Author: Phoebe Dishman

Phoebe H. Dishman was born and raised in Beaumont, Texas. She is a wife, mother, and grandmother. An essayist and poet, she teaches adult Sunday school, compiles a monthly prayer calendar, edits the Big Thicket Association quarterly bulletin, and keeps a keen eye and ear open for birds.

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