Haiku by Nancy Rekow
One heron standing.
Mist hangs low in the valley.
I will write to you.
Painting by Kathleen Faulkner
by Nancy Taylor
In Beacon Hill Park, Victoria B.C.
a bald eagle
the world’s tallest
The bird preens,
the grassy field
from its perch.
After I read
the eagle totem’s duties—
rule over the skies,
from the creator.
whether it’s brooding
over the Spirit’s edict
or if it’s disgruntled
by its totem Kwiew’s
priority half-way up the pole.
by Diane Moser
Image by auenleben from Pixabay
Every bird merits a greeting.
I greet them every day
on my deck or
walking by Liberty Bay
with a smile and howdy-do.
Fifty two years
since I nursed baby crow
fallen from the nest.
He slept in my tent awhile-
I taught him MaMa
fed him bugs and crawling things
pushed down his little throat
’til he could feed himself.
Bonding of bird and human
is a precious thing.
It flies above
guns and politics
and lodges in my heart.
by Mahathi Mangipudi
CROWN FEATHERS OF PUGET SOUND
A step outside my house
surrounded by glistening droplets
field guide and binoculars in tow
down at Puget Sound
Flitting eyes scan water’s glare
flashes of light scatter
between waves and clouds
Near the coast
dark smudges wiggle and twist
little heads poke out
Orange and white feathers swirl into the blue
mussel shells scattered nearby
But, I have not seen you before
A quick peek at my guide
reveals the bird is a Scoter
Farther out, splashing catches my eye
long-necked and red-eyed
Is it a grebe?
I flip pages in my guide
Yes! A horned grebe
A shadow passes over me
a smile darts across my face
the faint outline of elegant wings sprawl across the sky
I tilt my head upwards
squint against the bright rays of light
Solitary forager of the marshes
I know your name, Great Blue Heron
Tucking my binoculars away into my sack
and my field guide under my arm
a little day’s walk by the Salish Sea
reveals its vast beauties to me
Today’s adventure has no end
for tomorrow I’ll venture out again
to watch those birds
hear their music
and experience the harmony of Puget Sound
GREY JAY GETS PROMOTED
by Nancy Taylor
It tickles when a grey jay
from the jack pine branch
to peck the almond
from my hand.
Other jays watch,
then join in the game
gently tweezing almonds
I hesitate to overfeed
and later learn
they cache up to 1,000 items a day
in crevices of boreal trees—
vital as they cling
to their territories
year ‘round, nesting
in temps below zero,
often covered in snow.
I hear their harsh clicks,
signaling predator on the ground
and wonder if the concern is me
or if they’re calling others
to share the bounty.
The jays whistle quee-oo
for danger from above
and even mimic predator
The grey jay with monochrome
tones and breast
the color of sky before it snows
beat out the common loon, snowy owl,
Canada goose and black-capped chickadee
for Canada’s National Bird.
Editor’s Note: The grey jay’s name has been officially changed to Canada jay!
by Al Gunby
CANADIAN AIR FORCE
They’re heard before they’re seen–
a mingled sound of leader’s call
and flock response–
then bursting over treetops,
right above me,
honking like machine guns strafing ground
toward the meadow to the east
where April rains left marshy welcome.
Folding wings, they land
in noisy celebration–almost home.
Nancy Rekow, a widely published and award-winning poet, has taught poetry and prose workshops on Bainbridge
for over 40 years, plus editing numerous books and publishing many—some with her late husband through their NW Trillium Press.
Nancy Taylor studied and starting writing poetry after 30 years of nursing. Her poems have been chosen by artists for Ars Poetica and has poems in Poetry Corners since moving to Bainbridge Island four years ago. Her book, Can We Keep Him, benefits Kitsap Animal Rescue and Education.
Diane Moser: For eighty years, animals and the natural world have been close to my heart. Through poetry, I hope to show the vital part they play in earth’s survival.
Mahathi Mangipudi is a junior at Interlake High School. She is a social activist, avid debater, and an environmental enthusiast. She represented the United States at the 2018 International Earth Science Olympiad in Thailand, where she earned a bronze and silver medals. She is pushing for local change towards a more sustainable community through the creation of the first Student Climate Action Plan.
Al Gunby, a retired nuclear/aerospace engineer, has always admired poets and poetry, but finally jumped in in 2002. His work appeared in Ars Poetica 2013 and for six years has been featured in Poetry Corners, sponsored by Bainbridge Island Arts & Humanities Council.
Table of Contents, Issue #6, Winter 2019
by Adelia Ritchie, Winter 2019Painting by Adelia Ritchieby Adelia Ritchie, Winter 2019 Such big ideas we had when we first set out to inhabit Bufflehead Pond Farm! The place had not been properly tended for years and the local ecology (mostly blackberries and...
by Gene Bullock, Winter 2019Photo by John F. WilliamsPhoto by John F. Williamsby Gene Bullock, Winter 2019 Native Americans learned long ago that if they hung hollow gourds around their villages, they could attract Martins to nest in them. The birds repaid them by...
by Nancy Sefton, Winter 2019Photo by Philip HutchersonPhoto by Philip Hutchersonby Nancy Sefton, Winter 2019 As I floated in my kayak, I spotted a great blue heron perched on a mass of partially submerged roots. Suddenly it stabbed the water and came up with a small...
by Todd Ramsey, Winter 2019Photo by Eric Wagner, COASST staffPhoto by Eric Wagner, COASST staffby Todd Ramsey, Winter 2019 It all started out so innocently. We just wanted to pick up trash on the beach after a storm. Soon after that we discovered COASST.org (Coastal...
Showcase of Participant Photos North Kitsap Heritage Park from September 18, 2019 Showcase of Participant Photos North Kitsap Heritage Park from September 18, 2019 On September 18, 2019, WSU Extension in Kitsap County hosted a Forest Foto Expedition led by John F....
by Sharon Pegany, Winter 2019Artwork by Catherine WhalenArtwork by Catherine Whalenby Sharon Pegany, Winter 2019 turn of time rustle of feather echoing songs of beak and bill listen afresh to the voices among usWinter may be a quiet season in the Salish Sea region,...
by Julia Parrish, Winter 2019Photo by Lee TenneboePhoto by Lee Tenneboeby Julia Parrish, Winter 2019 In Washington State, there is a bewildering abundance of seabirds. The seabirds of the surf zone that always capture my imagination are in the Alcid family: murres,...
by Paul Pegany, Winter 2019Photo by Catherine WhalenPhoto by Catherine Whalenby Paul Pegany, Winter 2019 The Russians are indeed coming! They are winged, white, and ready to spend their winter along the shores of the Salish Sea in northwest Washington. As the rain...
Nature's Pest Control by Adelia Ritchie, Winter 2019 Photos by John F. Williams except where notedNature's Pest Control by Adelia Ritchie, Winter 2019 Photos by John F. Williams except where notedClose cousin of the purple martin is our hard-working summertime...
by Adelia Ritchie, Winter 2019by Adelia Ritchie, Winter 2019 On vacation in Costa Rica recently, I walked the city of San José one morning and visited a famous museum of pre-Colombian civilization, back when indigenous tribes lived in harmony with nature and as a...
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