Pods of gangangs hurl sleek grey bodies
into a receptive sky.  They surf, rising and dipping,
catching air-current waves in sets from ridge

to ridge.  Red-capped males lead.  Querulous calls
resound across the valley.  The empty space above
fills, opens out – a book I’ve always wanted to read.

Down the road, duck hunters in camouflage gear
camp by the jetty, waiting for the season to open.
I dread dawn’s mayhem, broken plumage. 

Early morning, the pop pop of distant guns interrupts
sleep, innocent as a child’s replica, doing its deal
of damage.  No peaceful transition from sleep, no

dream tatters curled about the mind to mull over while
the billy boils, to wonder at over breakfast.  All I think
of is the rain of bodies, the thud as they hit earth.

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