Giles Watson

Giles Watson

Posted on 04/26/2015

Photo taken on April 26, 2015

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The Season After

The Season After
The Season After

His young-bird plumage must have moulted now,
so as they serry themselves to preen
where the old jetty spans rickety
to the tall pole and its cormorant sentinel,
their bill-gussets flesh pink, translucent,
and the crested terns all windborne
about their heads, there is no way of telling
which pelican it was I wrestled,
force-fed with pilchards and electrolytes,
coaxed back into swimming, and released
before summer’s feathers had fallen.

Perhaps he’s that one there, who hesitates
a moment longer when the others turn
their half-preened backs upon me, ogling
a moment with his soup-dish oval eyes –
then shuns me also, and flies out grumbling
for Rushy Point, wind-riding, his wingstretch
reaching, clasping the remains of winter sun.

Poem by Giles Watson, 2015.