In our walled yard, a hawk
stood--grave as an angel--
on a snowy hump of feathers.
She turned her face and
fixed me with her perfectly
round and clear right eye.
At last she simply opened
her wings and rose, carrying
her lunch with her over the avenue.
It is all a matter of moment.
Fewer red lights and I might have seen
feathers flash against the sun:
the stoop, the strike,
the waves of air opening,
a whirlpool towards landfall.
Or, pursuing my usual routine, I'd have come
home late to a scattering of feathers, perhaps
one lump of bone glistening
in its pale pink sheath.
I'd have imagined immediately the neighbor's cat,
long black body pressed flat against the earth,
--slowly, slowly it must have crept
through the screen of bushes
towards the fat and
nearly flightless pigeon.
One paw, then
silently in the grass.
Muscles gather for the great uncoiling...
Hooked together, fur and feathers
tumbling across the lawn and finally
Later, sated, the cat tugs
the corpse away, under
the blackberry brambles.
Tracing the marks, I'd have read
a plausible, earthbound tale:
being completely confident,
being completely wrong.
so much….this is how it is. only for the pigeon, a single truth, for sure.
The hawk took one look at the world of humans from her place in the humans’ yard & took off to feast in peace!