Named for shape more than content,
The stream that strings their chilly pearls
Trails the city’s cheek more cheerfully
Once February’s ice has thawed.

March equinox. Early blackthorns dab the water’s edge,
Bathing their lace in the passing waters
While they hunch like Victorian washerwomen
Soaking the final hearthside smuts
From a double-cardigan’d sloe-sour winter.

And here among this new town’s folds and creases,
Tinsel snagged on a chicken-wire fence
Flutters in the sun like a feather boa.
A Scots pine jangles with Christmas ornaments
Hung by drunken teenagers for a nighttime party.

As Spring pecks itself free from its frosted shell,
A pilfered bauble sits gold and glittering
Among a clutch of blue-green eggs
As if a heron’s warmth might hatch
Another celebration.