The Great Horned Owl

As children of the orange underwing
crawl out of currant leaves in the Spring,
barklice, blackflies, spiders ooze
from the entrails of plants rousing

from torpor, the sedge and reed warblers,
water fleas of a shallow pond,
gnats delivering parasites and conformity,
the yells of Biblical monkeys, spawn.

Hedgehogs budge, grasshoppers chirp,
small lizards with slimy feet in cut pebble,
baby roach like dolphins swarm
sweet lakes and rivers, thrive

as white waves surge down rapids and falls,
splashing is heard in the gloom of ponds.
Copses are filled, out of a dragon’s mouth
storks fly with a lazy beat of their wings

to find food. Millions of stars
are brighter than usual, swans lively,
keelback slugs grow fast, birdhouses
need to be straightened, blackberries,

grey uncles in their tavern playing checkers,
a raven in a spruce shakes feathers.
A cool breeze brings the smell of ferns.
There are no words, just 5 kilograms of pasta

and tomorrow, more from the store…
An easterly drizzle, I wanted to say something
about humans, but they went
and talked about themselves first.

What then? Kingcups are flourishing,
we are heading through summer
towards autumn, the horned owl
kills a rabbit on a car store lot.

From A Dragon’s Son (Lohikäärmeen poika), 2007.

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