Poetry Friday:Spring by Marjory Wentworth


Join us for the Poetry Friday Round up hosted by Laura Purdie Salas

Our Spring Break begins one day early this year, since Friday is the day of our class trip to Philadelphia…no school!  Today, my kids were merrily chirping blackbirds – they flitted here and there, squawking and trilling, incapable of pausing for long at any one task.  They were, truth to tell, already on Spring Break.

So, here’s a poem that captures my kids on the eve of their Spring Break.  The author of this blog is feeling very much like her students – on Spring Break already, and in the read-spend time with family-take long quiet walks mode.  This blog and I are going silent for the next week…it’s time to enjoy our Spring Break!

Spring by Marjory Wentworth


After the rain, outside
the barred windows
of the classroom
tiny black birds
are bathing in puddles
beneath the oak trees.
Dipping into the icy water,
they shake their feathers
with such joy that their song
pulls us from our seats—
out onto the steps
where my students and I
walk into the first sunlight
we’ve felt for days
to watch them dance.

The birds remind me
of the Chinese peasants
I read about in college.
Sitting in the sunshine
on the first day of spring,
after cutting the quilted
clothes they were sewn
into for the long winter,
they gathered outside
to pick fleas from the sour
cotton lining of their jackets
and flick them at each other;
ducking and laughing
in the bright air,
while their children
ran naked into a pond
filled with melting snow.


16 thoughts on “Poetry Friday:Spring by Marjory Wentworth

  1. Happy Spring Break, Tara! Thanks for sharing that thought-provoking poem. Hope your time off is as inspiring and peaceful as your beautiful banner photo, and as fun as the pic of the bathing blackbird!

  2. I walked with Imi, my two-year old friend, on Wednesday and we loved listening to the birds. “…shake their feathers with such joy…” I love that image. Enjoy your break filled with reading, family time, and long walks. I love your new photo on the header!

  3. Happy srping break! It’s Autumn in my part of the world, but I too have been enoying lots of birdlife this week – magpies singing outside my office window, and kookaburras laughing at dusk.

  4. What a contrast between those two stanzas. So many senses engaged, particularly with these three lines;
    they gathered outside
    to pick fleas from the sour
    cotton lining of their jackets.

    May your spring break sing like birdsong and children’s laughter.

  5. What a wonderful post, Tara! I could fully imagine your students chirping, flitting, squawking and trilling in their spring and field trip fever of excitement. And then that amazing poem! Wow! Thank you so much for sharing and enjoy some well-deserved downtime on spring break.

  6. Hmm…yesterday from our classroom window, my students and I watched a hawk being mobbed by four crows in the sycamore at the back end of the soccer field. Kinda different from the blackbirds here!

    Happy spring break! You’ve certainly waited long enough for it — ours is so long gone it’s hard to remember the delicious slow pace of those days.

  7. I am behind in my reading of friend’s posts so I caught up with yours and realized that you must have had a wonderful break. I am wondering what the farm looked liked over break and what spring joy you felt.

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