Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

poem- they’ve installed the frosted glass February 10, 2021

Filed under: poem,Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 2:06 pm
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barriers to the outside





at a cost of claustrophobia

these walls close in

while we huddle

masking our smiles


hidden thoughts.


Poem- Summer storm August 1, 2020

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 11:30 am
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This air is thick enough to drown in
Wading through your words
Lightning flashes in the hills like my
anxiety after the press conference.
Summer storm raging.
They announce back to school plans.
I’m watching the hills for forest fires,
fearing the burning.
Brief respite: rain splatters on the back deck,
before oppression descends again,
and our power goes out.


Poem- Pandemic sestina May 5, 2020

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 6:37 pm
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These days are quiet time
Our hectic lives forced to slow
We breathe,
thankful for lungs that work,
content to wait
until it’s safe out there.
In some places, there
stands Death, taking its time,
poised with scythe, to wait
as heart beats slow.
The nurses do their work;
patients struggle to breathe.
deeply. There.
It’s work.
We wait.
The entire planet waits.
Even the wind breathes
in coughs and gasps. Fast.  Slow.
No more rushing here and there.
Clocks are useless. What is time?
Stay home.  Avoid work.
If you have savings and sick leave for your work,
you can afford to wait.
Money doesn’t equal time.
Some can afford to breathe
easy, but there
are folks who can’t afford to slow.
It’s hard being forced to slow
down, to re-think how we work,
to consider that there
comes peace in learning to wait,
in learning to breathe,
in resting for a time.
So slow down and wait.
Work on your breathing.
In time, freedom will be there.



A sestina is an old, French poetry form made up of 6 stanzas of sestets ending with a 3 line ‘envoi.’  Each stanza re-orders the end words of the first stanza (lexical repetition)  in a specific pattern.  




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poem- In the world beyond my windows May 1, 2020

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 1:57 pm
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The White Crowned sparrows fill

the yard; they butt striped heads at

the feeders, but they sing for their supper.

The sky is brilliant blue,

clouds hover around the edges of my sight, fringing

the hills.

Mount Ida is still white-capped,

the fire-dead splinters bristle through

the snow line above

a carpet of spruce and fir.  Across

the street someone has left

a painted rock beside

the mailbox; we’ve all earned its

purple heart.

Bursting buds,

New green leaves on spring awakened


The House Finch in

the blue spruce announces his

new family, but warbles his warning,

No visitors allowed!




This is a list poem. Sometimes they are numbered, though this one isn’t, obviously.  🙂  I don’t think I’ve seen one with enjambment like I’ve used here, but hey, it’s my poem. What good is a poetic licence if you don’t take advantage?






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poem- isolation moment April 21, 2020

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 7:58 pm
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Small dog,

heavy on my foot.

Scent of baking muffins

wafts down the hall.

Buzzer calls at last


poem- celebration April 21, 2019

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 7:40 pm
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pretend belonging

watch for signs of genuine affection

play the game,

be the same,

absorbing affectations

whispered longings




poem- headphone man May 16, 2018

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 9:39 am
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Hey, headphone man

with your head cast down,

I drive past you each day as you soldier on your way,

Always in the same place, unless you are late,

or I am early.

I try to catch your eye, but you march with determination

toward your destination.

I want to share our small connection, give a wave, or smile,

but you just stare at the ground, absorbed in the sound in your head.

Hey headphone man!

Look around!



I’ve been working on this one for ages, as I do pass this guy every day on my way to work.


poem-lonely June 17, 2015

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 10:18 am
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He’s in the man cave

staring at the tube

occasionally laughing

When he emerges

he ignores her as she does

her thing in

her space.

He’ll walk past and head to bed

without a word,

and she’ll watch him in the hall

wondering whether

everyone feels lonely.


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