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Stopping to Watch the Geese
by
Pat Hale


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The geese walk in the wet grass,
place each foot carefully, and with grace.
They move with deliberation,
like a class of pregnant ballerinas
on a poorly lit stage. Each step matters;
each step a demonstration of unlikely
balance. Toe-shoed acrobatics
are no more marvelous than this subtle
collaboration of torpedo body
and bone-thin legs. The murmuring
of the geese provides no hint
of the coming clatter, the horn solos
to herald their skyward congregation.
In their scuffling for food, no notion
of the efficiency of their flying
V-formation, or the perfect generosity
with which they will share
the burden of slicing through the air,
while back on stage, the ballet dancers
bear the weight of their female partners,
and can only wonder what it is like
to be the one suspended, the one in flight.

© by Pat Hale.
Used with the author’s permission.

 

 

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Pat Hale has written poetry since she was a little girl and believes it has supernatural powers, not unlike those that make it possible for Superman to fly and Lassie to hear Timmy, no matter how deeply he falls into the well. Pat's award-winning work has appeared in many journals and she facilitates a writing group modeled on the Amherst Writers and Artists method. A recent corporate layoff has provided her with the opportunity to spend more time writing and watching the Canada geese that frequent the field across from her house in West Hartford, Connecticut.


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