Spring! They return, the sandhill cranes, to the fenny fields behind our house and I have to resist the temptation to say our cranes, or even our fields. I imagine their ancestors arriving on a day like today, with patchy snow and the sweet gurgle of running water in the little stream – not our stream – that has snaked across the marshlands to the big, cold lake since long before we moved here and fallowed the old played out potato fields, even before the Anishinaabe-Ojibwe peoples came here to fish and gather wild rice. I imagine that first breeding pair gliding over a young post-glacial world of gravel and swamp and new woodlands, settling on this very field to take their place among the crows and fox and deer mice, first link of a long chain, the way one day leads to the next, the way we, too, have come to be a part of this world, to hatch our young and watch them spread their wings and fly away, and wonder.
like tall feathered men,
cranes walk upright in wet fields
gigging April frogs