New York still languishes on the icier edge of the Ides of March, but flocks of eager American Robins have sprung up around the muddy fields of my neighborhood with an alacrity that even a crocus could envy. Though we tire of robins once less commonplace birds appear, these birds herald blessed spring. I was so moved by the sight of these thrushes that I searched for a poem that might evoke the gladness of the moment. The European Robin (Erithacus rubecula) has inspired some splendid poems throughout history, even a few involving the onset of spring cheer. Perhaps you are as unsurprised as I that none Perhaps you are as surprised as I that one of the great poets has been moved to verse by our trusty Turdus migratorius. Admirers of avian odes will always find a kindred spirit in Emily Dickinson, who seems to have a suitable sonnet for any bird-related occasion, including this one.  (Thanks to Enchilada for a much-needed lesson in literature!)

The Robin is the One

The robin is the one
That interrupts the morn
With hurried, few, express reports
When March is scarcely on.

The robin is the one
That overflows the noon
With her cherubic quantity,
An April but begun.

The robin is the one
That speechless from her nest
Submits that home and certainty
And sanctity are best.

Written by Mike
Mike is a leading authority in the field of standardized test preparation, but he's also a traveler who fully expects to see every bird in the world. Besides founding 10,000 Birds in 2003, Mike has also created a number of other entertaining but now extirpated nature blog resources, particularly the Nature Blog Network and I and the Bird.