Birds wake Udo, my German Shorthair,
each morning with the original form of the tweet.
Six octaves lower, he sings duplicating "The Sun God's Lament"
Together they proposition a new day as I search for
shirt, socks, shoes, and step to the Temescal twilight.
Closer cousins to the dinosaurs,
birds bring us the first religion:
prayers to the sunrise.
Genetically, I know I should practice this faith,
reciting verses handed down from Velociraptor
 to praise the child of a long dead star.
But like Catholics before the vernacular,
too many generations have passed between me
and the writers of the song.
The priests of the maples sing,
but I only hear notes.
A melody Udo and I can match,
but who's meaning is hidden
to me, as the reason
the sun god comes back each morning,
is to a sparrow.

Stan Pisle is a Berkeley California poet. His work appears in Arroyo Magazine, on KQED San Francisco, and New Verse News.