The Owlet

September 12, 1994|By William Amelia

The owlet would come,

the reliable observer said,

in the early evening

and perch atop a rooftop plastic owl,

a scene that kept the neighbors

in conversation over the winter months

until the owlet stopped coming

and the conversation ended.

The owlet was never seen again,

but at night a hooting was heard

rolling over the marsh

and the neighbors listened and nodded

Then on the water one still spring evening,

happens in stories, I sensed a presence,

and turning saw an owl over midstream,

patrolling in a silent territorial flight

to the shoreline where it lighted

with ease on the top of a flagstaff.

With a quick settling of feathers

there it remained as darkness thickened

and then, as quietly as it appeared,

it lifted off, descended

and with a single whispered beat

of its broad wings ghosted down the canal

vanishing in the black

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