Kestrel, March 2020



Some days it seems enough to learn 

the French names of the birds

I can see from my study window

or when we walk along the beach:


goéland; chevalier; grand cormoran;

bécasseau; tournepierre à collier;

and yesterday a faucon crécerelle

unmoving in the wind which stirred


the trees which mark the line

between our garden and the sand.

That’s why, you said, they say it flies

en Saint-Esprit . . . 


We may be alone here for weeks.

If so, I’ll keep a watch

hoping he’ll come again

as though he’d bring a blessing

                                       in his train.

Published in Snakeskin 271, April 2020