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Posts Tagged ‘birds’

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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At the Pond

At the pond with Gramps I
did not know what I was
becoming, I thought it would
be like that forever, that I
could always catch bullfrogs
and fire-bellied newts with
my small hands, Gramps
guiding me over my shoulder.

Years later the pond changed,
I caught catfish and large-
mouth bass, my fishing line
that connected me to the web
of every living thing, to the pond
Gramps fished on his childhood
farm, Gramps confined to a chair
I could still march up the hill and
tell him the days fishing stories,
I thought it would be like that forever.

That I crossed that pond in every
way; in a small rowboat that leaked,
by foot around its edges, by a
young brave swim, in my mind,
was proof of it all, of
early earth when life began to
more developed creatures to
a place, a pond teeming with
all that makes life pleasant.

In his eyes I from boy to young man,
some potential he saw in youth,
in my eyes Gramps from old to older,
strong to frail, life to wisdom to rest.

To know Gramps gave time as
if he were the pond, as if he had
an infinite mound of sand in some
hidden room somewhere that he
could fill up the hour glass with,
fill up the pond with creatures to
fish for after he had gone, fill up
my head with infinite cherished
gifts, birds and frogs and snakes and fish.

 

Kyle McHale        2014

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Meeting Winter

Over out across winter’s day,
A pale blue with wisps of white,
Some sad forest with autumn gone,
Those trees that miss the season’s life.

I wander through at easy pace,
No goal in mind, no worrying,
The cold has me awake and clear,
The trees question what life I bring.

I am no season or the sun,
I cannot stop the season’s sleeping,
I am here by accident,
I can’t replace what nature’s taken.

But life still stirs, just slowly so,
Among some trees the birds still sing.
Among the ground some life is found,
Those hearts still beat under winter’s wing.

Maybe my small heart still glows,
Reflecting golden hopes of sun,
The subtle sounds of winters woods,
Wishing for that warmth to come.

At night when dark and cold must mix,
All living hearts are little lights,
Keeping safe those that are around,
Giving pulse to the lonely night.

At last I’m trapped out here somehow,
My glow is fading but won’t forget,
Those little torches light the way,
That night when winter and I met.

Kyle McHale      2011

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