Lockdown walk No. 20 Waiting for godwits by Colleen Keating

 

 

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Waiting for godwits

Today we had a picnic near the broad walk

overlooking a sanctuary for water birds

we have been waiting for godwits 

the bar-tail godwits

with their long curved beaks to arrive

special visitors from the Arctic for their breeding 

the furtherest distance of  migration 

we wiled away time observing water birds

sea gulls  shear waters  egrets  spoonbills  pelicans

plovers their five chicks

learning to forage in the sea grasses 

many species of ducks

their ducklings  tucked away

some grazing on the wrack and sea grasses

some gazing  about peacefully 

and we too gazed peacefully

suddenly the plovers were seriously distressed

birds honked, quacked, squawked as they filled the air 

and i looked out to see a dog

wildly flying across the shallows

chasing the fleeing birds 

disturbing the wrack and sea grass

with its food of crustaceans and other insects 

it chased after any bird that landed again 

galloped like a horse backwards and forwards 

a man watched on 

the still mirrored lake was  shattered 

the sanctuary was ripped apart

splashed up

churned like a miniature tsunami 

finally the man whistled

got on his bike and the big brown dog

 sloshed out of the lake followed him

I stared at him leaving . I was distressed.

i was shattered like the lake

 broken like a vase into a thousand pieces 

so powerless  close to tears 

my mind   my whole being 

needed to be picked up 

gently mended  

my tutor of course to restore calm

the lake 

and  the birds

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