our bridges reflect themselves,
shimmering as we cross
between the solid and what
we cannot control–
the light tells us stories
about what we think we see,
about what lies beneath
the surface of where and who
we think we are–
more, there is always more
that stays unfocused,
that contains what can’t be
seen it its entirety,
that reconfigures itself
with wind, or clouds,
or tides rising from the unseen–
they say humans prefer the mirrored
image to the camera’s eye—
the uncapturable moment
For Sue Vincent’s photo prompt, above.
The morning wakes without rain,
a shimmer of green
appearing from the silhouettes
of the trees scattered between
buildings. Silence floats
off the glossy reflections
of the windows
holding the rising sun.
I look for Crow flashing
black feathers as he calls
from somewhere I can’t see.
His voice bounces off
the brick and I imagine
he raises his sharp beak,
laughing as he follows
my eyes searching for the sound.
I have not asked him to speak–
he does not wait for invitations—
I do not for an instant believe
he is without purpose here
on this clear morning calling me
as usual to attention. Do you
pretend you know me?
he asks, and what can I reply?
How can you ever pretend
to know another when
you cannot even see who
this person is that you carry
with you all the time?
Who is this being that you call
is their true name?
Another piece of art inspired by Nina–her joyful birds, above. For the poem, I used a prompt posted awhile ago by Miz Quickly, in which you take lines from a poem and write them every few lines on a piece of paper and fill in the spaces between with your own words.
As Jane told me recently, it’s hard to find a poem of mine that doesn’t talk about birds. I used lines from an Adrian C. Louis poem “Magpie in Margaritaville”, which I found in the wonderful Tupelo Press book “Native Voices”. I couldn’t find a link to the poem online, but you can read about the poet, a member of the Paiute Tribe, here.
Also linking to earthweal, open link weekend.
we decoy ducks–turn
them into sitting targets
for the play of guns,
cartoon them with characters
that ignore their balanced grace
I did a lot of drawings and paintings of ducks and found them to be a challenge. Often they ended up looking more like decoys than something alive. I was interested to discover that the expression “sitting duck” came from how easy ducks are for hunters to shoot and kill–less sport than slaughter.
I also did not know that they spend 2 weeks in late summer or early fall molting, replacing all of their feathers. During that time they can’t fly.
Mallards are good parents, and prefer shallow freshwater wetlands to raise their families. They are one of the most recognizable and abundant duck species in the world, and ancestor to most strains of domesticated ducks.
For Colleen’s #tanka Tuesday, poet’s choice. I’ve written a tanka.
Inspired by Nina’s butterfly rock, above, a collaboration with the Oracle.
life must shine beneath
this summer moon
breathe bright breezes
through flowering light
walk on air
let the nightsong
follow you home
Last night the rain kept me from seeing the moon, but I did capture it the night before.
The Oracle was simple and direct today. Humans aren’t in the picture at all.
listen to winter
rain and sun
green through birdsong
deep summer air
Nina and I used to collaborate with the Oracle on a semi-regular basis. I’m hoping we will do so again soon.
Every beach vacation comes with its own bird. One year it was mockingbirds, one year a very vocal cardinal. One year, crows.
This year we were accompanied by grackles. They would sit on the railing of the beach house speaking in their rusty tongue, lined up like soldiers. If one turned, all turned. Once they saw someone was paying attention they would vocalize a bit more and suddenly disappear.
On the beach they appeared ahead of my walking path and waited for me, foraging in the waves. As soon as I caught up, they flew off ahead again.
Although it’s natural to see their iridescent strutting as a variation on crows, grackles are actually part of the lark family, related also to blackbirds and orioles.
But they do have a connection to crows—all back birds are said to know magic, to live on the borders of the possible unknown.
standing on the edge
between water and shoreline,
you pause, watch me watching you–
our eyes meet through layered light
For Colleen’s #TankaTuesday, poet’s choice of words, a haibun.
Draw-a-Bird Day is placeholding here at method two madness each month until Nina returns. You can find me at https://kblog.blog/ in the meantime.
I’ve also linked to dVerse Open Link night.
you woke me not with
singing, but with squawks—crowlike,
insistent and loud—
a flash of blue amid oak leaves,
glittering with morning sun
I read online that bands of blue jays making a racket are often harassing a predator–must have been a hawk about the other morning.
I will continue to do draw-a-bird day here, but I’ve been posting at kblog while Nina is taking an extended break. Once she returns, I’ll be back at MeMadTwo regularly again. In the meantime, visit me at my other site!