Owls’ deep echoes flow from midnight,
night’s center, when the Bear and the Queen
dance around the North Star. These songs wind up at dawn.
“Humpf! Humpf! Humpf! “ bounce among eucalyptus.
These misplaced Austrailian trees seize water,
turn soil acidic.
The earth’s sick here.
Dust and drought clutch wild fungi, stop their growth.
April’s madcap streams are empty, parched.
Jade grasses quickly twist to brown.
Rainless sun fries the ground.
Why do owls celebrate,
throw “Humpfs!” around the sunrise wind?
They perch in invader trees,
play Musical Branch as they circle and call
Waking robins, chickadees, wood peckers, turkeys
Who answer, “Gbbbblllee! Gbbbllleee! Gbbbbllle!”
Sky shifts from black to pink, throws light
down to orange poppies, yellow buttercups,
white fungi. Owls quiet down and sleep.
Passing geese serenade, “Awwnk! Awnk!”
Today this spot in California sings.
Chabot Regional Park, San Leandro, California 4/14