Monday, January 10, 2011

Prince Buzzard - January 9, 2010

Prince Buzzard,
I took you, so high in the air,
For a narrow boat and two black sails.
You were drifting

In the depths of the air
Wherever you wanted to go,
And when you came down
With your spoony mouth

And your read head
And your creaking wings
To the lamb
Dead, dead, dead

In the fields of spring
I knew it was hunger
That brought you’
Yet you went about it

So slowly,
Settling with hunched wings
And silent
As the grass itself

Over the lambs’s white body-
It seemed
a ceremony,
A pause

As though something
In the quick of your own body
Had come out
To give thanks

For the dark work
That was yours,
Which wasn’t to be done easily or quickly,
But thoroughly-

And indeed by time summer
Opened its green harbors
The fields was nothing but flower, flowers, flowers,
From shore to shore.

I am out on the edge of water this morning, the sun barely awake.  Over the Calooshatcee River in Ft. Myers the first Turkey Vultures begin to sail by around 9 a.m.  It’s cool, perhaps this is why .They await the heating of the day to form the thermals that bare them aloft. Or maybe, there just isn’t that much death so early in the day.

This is probably just another human delusion.  Beings and dreams have died all through the night, we just can’t see it.  Migrants of all kinds won’t make it to the next morning, whether it is blackbirds and doves falling from the sky or humans  from Mesoamerica, seeking a better life.  I am reminded of them as I went out this morning to buy coffee, finding it in a convenience store where I was the only non-native Spanish speaker.  They are here, and how many thousands are not, or will never know a life that flowers into full possibility? 

If I were brave, I would go out into the darkness with my flashlight and look for death to remind me that it all around, happening constantly though I sit here comfortable and pleasured, sipping coffee, on a deck of a house with a pool, Jacuzzi, multiple couches, and an HDTV.  No wait a minute. If I were truly brave, I would go out in the darkness with no light at all, and give myself over to death, so that there would be even more flowers on the morrow.  If I, if we, did this, then we might return to a world where the spattering of ducks and coots now on this river near me would cover this river from shore to shore?

1 comment:

  1. I used to consider coots, snipes as a child. Being knowledgeable of waterfowl growing up hunting duck and geese in Lower Klammath.

    I considered them the opposite (a photographer's negative) of ducks but not due to their color. It was because during the days we set out on the lake in a 14' flat bottom Valco with the power of forty horses it illegally really moved out.

    It was these days we were there to observe, not hunt, that I noticed the coots unique behavior when I tried to run them down in my tiny aluminum boat. Ducks jumped up and flew as I approached. Coots seemed inherently smart enough to know I was an above water threat. The Coots would either swim away and if they had to, at the very last second "duck" and swim underwater away from my boat.

    It was their common nomenclature and their behave hora of action as the reason I assigned them such a personal, important, unique and grand adjectives.

    black and opposite