The crows were at it in the park today,
unable, it seemed, to agree on anything
and unwilling to let any other have the last word.
I asked them to stop, and that bought
all of fifteen seconds of peace before one
decided the debate needed to go on.
It was a cacophony hard on the ears,
and I wondered if the person who decided
that crows in groups were a murder
had ever stopped to listen, for to me
any group of crows is a cacophony.
As I thought this a small gathering
of wrens took up their autumn song,
and in the face of that sweet,
trilling chorus even the crows fell silent.
The clouds are thick
today, each merging
into the next like
an ill-woven blanket,
stitches dropped, but still
not admitting light.
None assumes familiar shapes,
none require more
than a passing glance,
though none promise
Today clouds simply
cast a pall and we
are left to bear
reluctance to be of use.
We arose from water,
crawled forth and inhabited the land
and claimed dominion
and the land appeared
to cede itself to us,
and caring even less.
We return to the water
feel its pull
but immerse ourselves
only partially, willing
to risk only half drowning,
the land and air
usually silent, knowingly
laugh for they know
that a fish
out of water
in a sea of air.
over the Park
a Magritte sky
gather in an old oak
to discuss this,
fly off at the approach
of a black lab
in imagined freedom.
We love the flower, more so
if it adopts the brighter shades
of nature’s palette, and even
tolerate the fern, but only if
it truly honors the greens
it is supposed to bear and unfurl.
We save our spite for the fungus
which reaches up to us
with surprising haste, nothing
this day, fully formed tomorrow
as if to suggest a resurrection
from something dark and dank
hidden below the surface.
Still, we turn our back on it,
wish it gone, find it ugly
and never pause to wonder how it
views us in the early light of morning.
The hawks have been circling
more frequently of late,
but in the early autumn laziness
of merely riding the breezes
that seem to pick up in the mornings,
before the midday sun bids them
be calm so it can make its transit.
By afternoon, they tend to roost
high up in the giant pines, peering
down as the flow of people flows
along the paths seeking to grasp
the fading warmth and last blooms
for a few moments longer, and
as evening approaches the hawks
take flight again, knowing the moon
can move the tides, but is powerless
to change the winds which blow
when and where their sky mother chooses.
She’s a real bitch, that one,
and there is no telling her anything,
at least anything she doesn’t want to hear.
And to make matters worse still,
she can be so damn alluring, and you know
when she turns it on you are hopeless
to do anything other than fall
hard and fast under her spell.
We’ve done this before, too many
times to really count, and she will
sooner or later, but never when expected,
turn on you and leave you wondering
why you fell into her trap yet again.
But she’s Mother Nature, after all,
so what choice did you really have.