In Uruguay, in spring, I've often heard
lighthearted trills along a country road:
the lively, undiminished ovenbird
sings as she builds her intricate abode.
The wily swallow, with no stringent code
of constancy, surveys the chambered nest,
and knows that, following this episode
of eggs with which the other bird is blessed,
he'll snatch the abdicated space. Hard-pressed
though he may be for time, for love, for will,
too wise to prove an uninvited guest,
he waits it out upon a window sill.
The ovenbird, deemed artless by the swallow,
to practiced eyes is one tough act to follow.
(by Catherine Chandler, first published in Texas Poetry Journal, Spring 2006)