It was a home birth
In a big hot tub.
She slid into warm water
in the middle
of the living room.
Her brother and sister
watched the miracle.

As she took her first breath
A bird flew through
an open window
right over the new baby.
Sister Luna, age three,
Shouted “birdie”!!
And that became baby’s name.

Birdie, now five,
with wispy blonde curls
and misty blue eyes,
sits in my lap.
She strokes my cheek
“I love you auntie.”

My daughter warns,
“the virus is harmful mom,
but no touch is fatal.”
After seven months of
isolation and no touch
I fly south to family.
To hugs, cuddles and love.

The pandemic continues.
Winter is coming.
Cases are rising.
Back in my Alaskan home
I look at a picture of Birdie.
Her tiny arms around my neck.
Her soft curls caressing my cheek.

I hear her tender voice
in my ear gently asking,
“Auntie can I have a sleep over?”
“Can I sleep in your bed?”
“Can I fly to Alaska with you?”
“When are you coming back?”
“I love you.”