a clump of feathers and dried bones

as first light creeps into the consciousness of morning’s beginning,
the doves cooing goes silent
until dawn
as the sun peeks over the peak of Mount Miguel
to begin his slow, low pendulum arc across the southern horizon,
beaming over the land before the Aztecs knew no border;
on the lone silent, dead, and white washed trunk
protruding from a leafy foundation of its striving to live beginnings,
a hawk perches on the one small, treacherous limb
atop the dead projection,
a sentinel surveying the surrounding countryside for game;
in a meadow of fresh mown grass,
browned by that sun’s sweep across the southern horizon
lies a clump of feathers and bone,
all that’s left of an earlier game of sorts
leaving the red-tailed hawk on the limb satisfied,
no: satiated.

man seems to have forgotten what it means to be a human being,
different because man can think beyond the need to be satiated
like the red-tailed hawk, the sentinel on the dead spire of an eucalyptus;
seems to not understand caring, loving, forgiving, thinking, and rising above
the animal of the hawk on the limb, the coyote in the canyon,
the bobcat in the arroyo, the rattler in the manzanita
rising above survival and taking care of others;
is a noble pursuit giving more satisfaction than
belching over a clump of feathers and dried bones.

the doves cooing is a soothing sound
just before first light, then after dawn;
perhaps the doves and the red-tail hawk
know more than given credit.

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