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Posts Tagged ‘bird’

That is No Place for Birds

After heavy loss, sorrow stricken streets,
crushed towns, broken houses,

that is no place for birds
but still a robin sits and sings
on the gate
through the rainy window,
knows you’re sad, and waits.

After heavy loss, torn, convoluted earth,
shell holes, blood-stained muddy puddles,
lost young souls,
it has been one hundred years
since the Somme,

that is no place for birds
but they found perches
even on bare trees
with no leaves
even if the worms they
ate crawled out of the eye-
sockets of the dead,
they were fed
singing still, knew the
sadness in the air,
and waited still.

In my dreams that
I cannot control
a shock of living
re-living in a
make-believe dream world,
a make-believe real world,

that is no place for birds
but a giant eagle appears,
tucks me under his wing
to rest on his warm breast
to keep the bad noises out,
he knows my sadness
he lets me sing
and waits.

Kyle McHale       2016

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Fishing on the Bushkill

When all that meant everything
Was a fire burning deep at night,
With friends to share life’s comic air,
The moon above to steal sight.

That was right, that was right, a time
And place suspended still somewhere.
A vault, untouched, unnamed, floating
Above those who wish they could stare.

Protected there my father lives
At that scout camp Resica Falls.
In his teens and full of living,
Hearing that Pennsylvania call.

One summer out there out posting
Past the main camp to staff Fawn Run,
My young father was on the edge,
A place where deep thoughts had begun.

He had time in those woods alone,
And ran his post when campers showed,
He’d often talk of Bushkill Creek,
Of its bronze color and how it flowed.

He’d make a fire, grab his rod,
At evening time he’d fish the creek,
Time spent in that flowing sweetness,
Relying on brown trout to eat.

Like a bear that is so content
To fish and eat and sleep so well,
Under stars from heavens glow,
The years to come no one could tell.

What thoughts my father had before,
Standing there on Bushkill’s shore,
Before he lost love and fought a war,
When life was moments, nothing more?

Did he know what the future held,
Or simply watched the river flow?
Was Vietnam even a thought?
Into that jungle he would go.

Did he know he’d be scoutmaster?
His sons to be and that boy the same,
All destined to be Eagle Scouts,
I knew the man that boy became.

Navigating rivers and life,
In that protected vault of then,
Trout, Brotherhood, Spirit, being
Among the links of boys to men.

Deep in the woods where wild calls,
Links that are not seen, are not heard,
Father’s gone but the Bushkill flows,
He has become that secret word.

Some of his ashes flow there now,
To keep the Bushkill’s spirit safe,
To guard by way of bird and fish,
To strengthen love and heighten faith.

What thoughts my father had before,
Standing there on Bushkill’s shore,
Before he lost love and fought a war,
When life was moments, nothing more?

Kyle McHale      2011

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