I live in Redondo Beach, a suburban town on Santa Monica Bay. Thus, my little murder of crows is not as grand as the one in Murr Brewster’s April 1 Home Forum essay, “We are observed.” Nevertheless, the “neighbors” make themselves known.
One day, after much unremitting raucous crow clamor, I wandered out to see what was up. A dozen crows lined the wires across the street, their focus on the gutter at my feet.
A dead crow. “She’s dead,” I hollered. “I’m sorry, but I can’t help you. There’s nothing I can do.”
I wrapped the late tribe member in a trash bag and took it off. They decided it was finished and departed.
Redondo Beach, California
Regarding the cover story “The budding nuclear threat” from the March 18 Weekly Print Edition: I am so grateful that The Christian Science Monitor is covering the urgent issue of limiting and finally abolishing all of the world’s nuclear weapons.
I feel that the growing danger of a nuclear holocaust is the greatest threat ever faced by the human race. And it is absolutely essential that more people become aware so that we can prevent it from ever happening.
I loved reading Todd R. Nelson’s Home Forum essay “The day I heard poetry call” in the April 15 weekly edition with reference to E. E. Cummings and Billy Collins. It brought back memories of my own call to poetry.
I grew up with the poems of Shel Silverstein, but then I’d lost touch with poetry in middle and high school. I remember reading E. E. Cummings’ poem “r-p-o-p-h-e-s-s-a-g-r” for the first time in 11th-grade English class.
Initially it looked like nonsense, but when I got to the end where those letters rearrange themselves to become “grasshopper” I was overcome with delight! I love word play, and suddenly poetry was fun again and I could relate.
Therefore I was excited when I got to meet Billy Collins, a U.S. poet laureate who is quoted in Mr. Nelson’s article, at a poetry festival in my hometown. His poetry, too, was fun and relatable. I began writing poetry and learned to love it anew: I saw how it had no real limitations of tone, structure, or even punctuation, but can be anything the poet wants.
Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts