Blackbirds

Every thirty minutes
your flock
descends upon the yard
for a few moments
always moving
stalk to stalk.

As if you must
file reports
about the world
beyond the ugly wall
that sets firm
a boundary
between public
and private land.

Not that you’d care
or if the wind
would stop
at this manufactured line
rising skyward
and out into space.

Or that I could tax
your wings
for using my air
you employ
to express your ravings.

copyright © 2021 Kenneth P. Gurney

Earshot

A flock of sheep
gather at the stream for water.

A cloud moves shade
across a treeless hillside.

A dirt road led me to this scene.
My ears sort through sounds to hear wool grow.

Two Sandhill cranes pass overhead,
circle and land in the field.

The stream passes into a culvert
and under the dirt road.

It emerges on the other side
in a flat place with rushes and cattails.

A blackbird sings the flock over
to where I stand at the fence.

Their black faces rise up and they bleat.
I hear their wool stretch and yawn.


copyright © 2020 Kenneth P. Gurney

Leave

Forgetting to take care of yourself,
weeds have grown in your eyes:
your stare now wild and buzzing.

Since you cried, it is not surprising
I see cattails with red-winged blackbirds
when your eyes meet mine.

Your eyes are so overgrown
it is hard to see the sky from the angle I’ve taken
at the seat opposite yours in the cafe.

And when you blink the scene changes.
Always wild. Now ponderosa covered mountain slopes.
Now the cholla choked desert.

You suggest we take a break from civilization,
form our own Corp of Discovery,
a grand expedition to undiscovered states.


copyright © 2019 Kenneth P. Gurney

postscript

For those of you who do not know, the Corp of Discovery was the title given to the group of men that formed the Lewis & Clark expedition to explore the Louisiana Purchase by President Thomas Jefferson.

Creatively

A pregnant Canada goose waddled across my midsection,
laid eggs on my soft belly and sat. I wondered at the commitment
I was about to make lying still until the hatching.

What was the goose doing in my studio?
Who let her in?
Why did the goose think my belly a good nesting site?

I thought, I could hate this in a day or two.
I realized I gave no permission and this was trespassing.
I asked myself why do Canada geese lay eggs in New Mexico?

I knew I needed to practice quiet.
I knew I needed to practice stillness.
I knew I needed to pee.

If there is a goose present, cattails might grow in my studio.
And cattails would attract blackbirds.
I don’t remember why this is important creatively.


copyright © 2019 Kenneth P. Gurney

POSTSCRIPT

Wikipedia on Canada Geese. They are known to lay their eggs in precarious places or out in the open.