Cardinals Mate for Life / At the End of the World, At Least We’ll Have This | poetry by Claire Taylor

Cardinals Mate for Life 

I read so in our Young Birder’s Guide. 
I, neither young nor birder, watch at the window as
a male cardinal picks up a seed from the ground beneath the feeder
and carries it to the female waiting two hops away.
He passes the seed from his beak to hers. 

Look at that, you say 

as you come into the room and hand me a mug of coffee.
At the End of the World, At Least We’ll Have This 

You can’t hear the music. 
I’m wearing ear buds, swaying my hips 
my head full of noise like always 
when you take my hands, a quiet anchor 
and I cue you in: it’s bad news, baby 
and then we’re dancing, stepping and spinning 
across the kitchen floor while outside 
a storm builds over an ocean, a spark 
searches for kindling. I say let it burn. 
Let it all burn—turned to ash, 
laid to waste, let the earth 
crack open and devour everything 
but these gray tiles 
this stainless steel 
everything but you, 
dipping me in perfect time 
to the end of a song you can’t even hear.

Beeper Peddle is a writer and healer living on the East Coast. She lives with her partner and their beloved soul puppy. Beeper writes about sorrows, lies, and deep loves. When you read her work, you will dip down into her heart and end up in all manner of body parts. Should you find yourself reflected in these words, it is merely coincidence; however, it does not surprise her you share the same heart. Find her at and @beeperpeddle on Twitter and Instagram

Claire Taylor is a writer in Baltimore, Maryland. She is the author of a children’s literature collection, Little Thoughts, as well as two micro-chapbooks: A History of Rats (Ghost City Press, 2021) and As Long as We Got Each Other (ELJ Editions, 2022). You can find her online at and Twitter @ClaireM_Taylor.