Far from hand, perched in a tree,
churrs a Red-Bellied Woodpecker.
Bobbing his head, the branched trekker
mourns the memory of Eurydice
with rattling call and pleading plea.
By scarlet crest and banded back,
with elegy and threnody,
with joyful dirge and melody,
he adorns the leaves with clacks
and kwirrs in mirthful symphony.
But his Orphean song cannot still
his anxious heart and turning head,
and in a moment she is fled.
Undeterred, he sings in trills
of strength and Sisyphean will.