There’s one little lark you never see,
He sits high up in the tree.
His body is scrunched against the trunk,
and in the shadows he tries to duck.
Us other larks who sit up there,
we’ve never heard him sing we swear.
He sits all day and listens intently,
but he never joins our songbird revelry.
We wonder if the quiet lark can sing,
or if he thinks he’s too good, a “little king.”
When we ask him to join he stares wide-eyed,
We can’t tell if it’s because of fear or pride.
Sometime we hear him start a refrain,
but when we join him he stops, in disdain.
He won’t join our melodious community,
though we always invite him to join the jubilee.
When one day we stopped making assumptions.
We had finally worked up the gumption.
We asked, “Why are you always so aloof?
Why won’t you sing along? Tell the truth.”
“I am not aloof, when you sing I hear,” he said.
“The thought of singing with you fills me with dread.”
“Why,” we ask, “do you not like us?”
“No, I do like you,” he said, “It’s just . . .”
“The songs you sing are slightly worn.
They have mostly been sung before.
I want to sing a song that is new,
until then I cannot sing with you.”
In our tree the quite lark remains,
Waiting to sing with us a fresh refrain.
The Lark Who Doesn’t Sing