Black-capped Chickadee – a poem by Amelia Díaz Ettinger

Black-capped Chickadee 

Parus atricapillus

its daintiness is deceiving
with looks so frail, and yet

they suffer winter storms 
in these brutal mountains—a banditry

after a blizzard. They speckle
the blinding snow with dee-dee-dee

a song reminiscent of spring 
in the death of frost

maybe that is why I think of her— Emilia
when I see these tiny nearly tame acrobats

foraging in naked branches finding
morsels where I see none


I was late to meet her, her warmth
the way she blanketed 

my shoulders in a hug
how she gave me tidbits for decades lost

in this tiny bird’s industrious energy, I see
her paused steps among the Mexican streets 

she shared with the family she nurtured
as formidable as a chickadee

— my mother

Amelia Díaz Ettinger is a ‘Mexi-Rican,’ born in México but raised in Puerto Rico. As a BIPOC poet and writer, she has two full-length poetry books published; Learning to Love a Western Sky by Airlie Press, and a bilingual poetry book, Speaking at a Time /Hablando a  la Vez by Redbat Press, and a poetry chapbook, Fossils in a Red Flag by Finishing Line Press. Her poetry and short stories have appeared in literary journals and anthologies.

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