Poetry & Other Writing

Malheur Before Dawn

Malheur Before Dawn
— William Stafford

An owl sound wandered along the road with me,
I didn’t hear it–I breathed it into my ears..

Little ones at first, the stars retired,
leaving polished little circles on the sky for a while.

Then the sun began to shout from below the horizon.
Throngs of birds campaigned, their music a tent of sound.

From across a pond, out of the mist,
one drake made a V and said its name.

Some vast animal of air began to rouse
from the reeds and lean outward.

Frogs discovered their national anthem again.
I didn’t know a ditch could hold so much joy.

So magic a time it was that I was both brave and afraid.

Some day like this might save the world.