by Ann Taylor
There’s nothing going on here
this overheated July afternoon –
no redtail, no snapper, no coyote,
no wind roughing into whitecaps,
no blizzard whitewashing the mountain,
nor wobbly ducklings, goslings, cygnets.
Nothing but stands of Queen Anne’s Lace,
Purple Loosestrife, Yellow Butter and Eggs,
Cat o’ Nine Tails, new in lush brown.
Nothing but the silhouette of a Black Lab
poised like a figurehead on the prow
of a fisherman’s rowboat.
I follow the flight of one Herring Gull
across the one cloud,
itself dissolving into the hazy blue.
For the almost-children’s-picture-book
Monarch and a Honeybee competing
for a single nectarous blossom, I pause.
The evergreen trail home
is dusty, rusty green where
a red-eyed Cooper’s Hawk calls,
settles just above my head.
Back to me, he ruffles smooth shades
of slate gray layered in a subtle cascade.
“Pondwalk” also appeared in the summer 2014 issue of The Avocet: A
Journal of Nature Poetry
Ann Taylor is a Professor of English at Salem State University in Salem, MA, where she teaches writing and literature courses. She has written two books on college composition, academic and free-lance essays, and a collection of personal essays, Watching Birds: Reflections on the Wing (Ragged Mountain/McGraw Hill). Her first poetry book, The River Within, won first prize in the 2011 Cathlamet Poetry competition at Ravenna Press, and her chapbook, Bound Each to Each, was published by Finishing Line Press in 2013.