[a spring poem I wrote in 2008]
In the woods I pick up an empty nest:
perfectly round, horse and dog hair
laced with slender dry grass stems
the centre trailing a jumper’s flakes
of old green wool. I think
of the return of snakes.
Nest in hand, no bird in bush
I whistle my dog back around
from his foray, start moving
across the boggy ground
and almost tread on a copperhead.
Heart jolt, breath suck, kicked arse
as the long shadow glistens
blackly and slides into grass.
Coming back the season’s first Jezebel
is flitting her gaudiness between
the mismatched androgyny
of two trees: Israeli Anna’s
pink apple blossoms
and the fat yellow pistons
of the sunshine wattle.
Suddenly this spring day nets me
home with nest, snake, apple
resurrected butterfly in a place
back in the wordy beginnings
of my lost and wandering race.