sister wind whistles and spins

A fulcrum of momentum,
she wraps her wings across her breast
until she spins out brave new worlds
where long necked geese rise through ruddy sunshine.
Thrumming a rustle of feathers on air,
they become a subliminal one with wind,
riding on her smug untidy currents.

Urging migration, sister wind eradicates
the gullibility of yesterday’s unmoving mellow air,
twisting the shallows of the lake
into crystallized shudders.
A rush of ice forms and forces this wild congregation
to hoist their voices, unfold their wings, and sweep circles
over the freezing wet cycle of time.

Sister wind whistles and spins
as silver and black flutter and flash
imprinting seasonal patterns,
migratory gyrations that weave feathers
through the shimmering spokes of her spirit’s fierce wheel.

Brenda Warren 2011

Process Notes:
After spending some time watching Canadian geese rise and fall across the expanse of Benton Lake National Wildlife Refuge, I wrote down twelve words for The Sunday Whirl. Check the Whirl every Sunday for a new wordle.

This morning, I morphed the words into this piece, which at first would not come. Once wind developed into “sister wind,” the piece flowed freely.

Sister wind whistles and spins for the geese. May they journey for many centuries across the prairie potholes that dot their North American migratory routes. May water fill these potholes each spring. May they flourish and flash with sister wind, reminding us of our relationship with the earth.

16 thoughts on “sister wind whistles and spins

  1. It’s wonderful when a key like “sister” wind opens a door to any poem, but this one is special, Brenda. We live for those eureka moments, and this one was perfect.


  2. “A fulcrum of momentum,” is wonderful, Brenda! I love love love this piece, start to finish. It is really spectacular. You have painted a beautiful picture with your words.


  3. Lovely piece Brenda. You live in a beautiful part of the country. The Canada Geese winter here. Always lots of them around in January. I like the idea of Sister Wind. I found these words challenging this week! Good write.


    • Thank you, Peggy. I am lucky to live in Montana. The landscape can be desolate and breathtaking at once. Birds harbor interesting lives. There are National Wildlife Refuges in most states. I love to seek out the wetlands and watch waterfowl move through. I’m getting to know some of the species at Benton Lake because I visit so often….they change with the seasons.


  4. The last stanza ends it so beautifully. There’s a mythic quality to “sister wind”, and the idea of seasonal patterns in the migration of geese. Wish I was there with you, Brenda, but glad your words did.


    • Your company would be welcome, Irene. For eight years I lived in an old farmhouse in the Judith Basin of central Montana. The house was one of two houses for many miles, and the basin, or “the gap” is a major migrational route for birds. Every year I lived there, the pelicans announced their arrival with the sound of their wings, hundreds of pairs beating against the wind. The first time I heard them, I was in awe for hours. They came into Buffalo Creek, where they remained to rest and feast for a few days. Magnificent sound. Every single year, I heard them before I saw them.


  5. As late autumn eases into early winter we watch the Canadian Geese all gathering in long stretches of sand banks on the water or, in large fields to rest before the next leg of their flight. It’s amazing to see and to hear them all as more arrive to join them.
    This piece is so lovely. Captures the feel of their freedom through the air and the wind whistling a gentle acceptance of their presence.


  6. This is beautiful, Brenda. I love the idea of “Sister Wind.” I enjoy watching the migrations overhead, but it is sad as well. Another winter on the horizon. Usually by now I have a good start on my poem or have it completed. Not tonight. I will have to see what comes tomorrow.


    • Thank you, Viv. I generally don’t post this early, but I do love this piece. It’s about time that I wrote something that isn’t weighted in darkness. A couple days of relaxation suited me. 🙂


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