Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Bird Lands (Poem)

Today's poem is from Neruda's Memoirs: Poems (T.S. Poetry Press, 2011).

Bird Lands

Sleep shakes out into Morgenland
— land of morning —

stubby doves break the fast of silence
with kwurr-kwurr and woo-coos,

sift the grass for themes to nourish
lilting songs to fill the cracks of dawn

and beat off blue-jacketed jays'
rockfest of distractions.

Magnolias blossom in Abenland
— land of afternoon —

its mood rising to the velvety blue-black
of ravens' shimmery long-lined backs.

Storms are coming, the sparrows
suddenly massing, tufted heads tucked in

close to wait out the cloud-clash,
the plaint of rain on fevered blades gone brown.

Soon the all-clear, borne on a live-wire streak
of dew-nipped wings, the sharp bead of eyes

thrilling to feed in the Land der Nacht
— land of night —

the hoot of echoes in a clearing
just below the upraised roof of the sky

become a decrescendo of swooping owls
taking up their night's watch

of stars splitting the dark like gone-mad cells
making work of new life.

© 2011-2016 Maureen E. Doallas

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