Green Heron Morning

This shy green heron alights
in cautious stillness poised

under circling swallows
with newly hatched babes

her prey unaware in this
layered gray morning.  She plucks

a wriggling minnow
into the heaviness of air.

Life wants to live.  The fish
frantic for a chance to flop

to freedom.  She needs him still,
she lays him out in the wet shore

grasses, both of them
hungry for different possibilities.

At last he disappears and she
deals with the aftermath

cleaning the fight scene
before a quick stalk

for seconds.  She is wary
with her next course, an

easy catch but there’s a long
shoreline to monitor and she’s so

very close to a human’s house–
moving my energy to calm and slow–

How long can a fish swim
in the air?  She tests its limits

letting it tire on the ground
before snapping it up once more.

The swallows dive lower
but she is staying in the minnows’

favorite shelter from the jumping
bass in deeper waters.

Hungry and sly, still and deadly
on this overcast day, no reflection

to warn them.  She blends into the
steel-gray waters under the dock

and I’ve lost her, watching
through the drizzle a blue stone

lulled like the minnows
who finally return

for the next encounter with
death and living sacrifice.

Inspired by: Reflect and  Drizzle

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