Jennifer Reeser
The Hummingbird Conservancy

They’ve sent me, un-requested, mailing labels
imprinted and made intimate, my name
in linear font; beside it – left of title –
their mascot hovers, ruby-necked, gold-gray
of body, nothing groveling, ornate,
or punctuated: simple to the point
of Francis's ascetics.

                              How they came
to think I'm a conserver puzzles me,
but here they are, preserving in the desert
vague habitats, romantic by their distance,
and what aspiring mystic turns aside
from such a proposition? Experts say
the hummingbird is only hours away,
at any given moment, from starvation,
its nectar sipped in near-unending flight
just to sustain existence.

                                    I've been known
to raise my tone in study or frustration.
I've yet to meet my talisman, the swan,
and this is not my pet, the dragonfly.
In me, our phylum suffers, but I write
a check, despite their migratory error,
envisioning ambrosia-seeping canyons.
Variety, at least, is satisfied.


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