Saturday, November 8, 2014

November by David Holt

The November Watch

As the cold front passed through both of them knew
that northwest winds would be close behind.
They'd hie to a mount, a veritable fount,
of hawks of singular mind.

For south through the skies the hawks would now fly,
seeking land that is more provident.
So the wife and the man would take up a stand,
to witness this marvelous event.

All season they waited, their yearnings unsated,
for weather that just now occurred.
But the weather stayed sober through September and October
and the man and wife were deterred.

But with this happenstance they had one more chance
to view hawks majestic and near.
They both had agreed that all they would need
was a place where the skies would be clear.

They should have known better, but their zeal without fetter
took them up to a place they both knew.
A place they oft went to view this event
but where young skies rarely showed blue.
(They called it Pott's number two)

Now high in the sky what came to their eye?
Not a hawk nor even a cloud.
For the fog settled down, around all around
engulfing them in a gray shroud.

Now the fog rolled and rolled,
borne by winds that were bold
keeping hawks even vultures from sight.
They'd committed their day yet struggled to stay
to witness a marvelous flight.

Not only the shroud (that infinite cloud)
would hamper their efforts that day.
But the air that was cold borne by winds that were bold
caused their bodies to tremble and sway.

What brought us to this? They would now reminisce,
balmy days that were theirs in September.
They'd come face to face with faltering grace,
of the fact that it is now November.

They decided to persist while nature would insist
on their ouster with all of her might.
We've come here this day and, by God, we will stay
to witness a marvelous flight.

By the hour of eleven the sky seemed to leaven,
and for moments the sun did peek through.
Putting them in new light, an astonishing sight,
the sky was still there and still blue.

By twelve the shroud lifted, its vastness was rifted
breathing into their spirits new life.
On hopes that now soared, “We'll get our reward,”
said calmly the man to the wife.

As the hours now passed they kept up the glass
scanning vistas in new winter's form.
But the hawks were not there in that cold northern air.
They wondered if they'd ever be warm.

A Redtail hung high with ground searching eye
'cause by now it needed to prey.
And Ravens flew 'round - those ebony clowns
'Twas all they'd seen there that day.

Defeated and in anguish they dared not now languish
for the sun was sinking down low.
But the air was so clear, forty miles seemed so near,
they slowly made ready to go.

When the car had been loaded and its engine was goaded
 to whisk them briskly away.
“Permit one more scan,” said the wife to the man,
for something to rescue this day.

As she searched in the blue there came into view
a bird of enormous size.
She called out in glee for the man to come see,
she surely had garnered a prize.

From out of the blue on wings straight and true,
came a bird with an aura so regal
They felt not the cold nor the winds that were bold.
They were watching a young Golden Eagle!

It reveled their eyes as it wheeled in the skies
showing wings with patches like snow.
Gold hackles were seen as if it had been
put out there, just for the show.

Now both of them knew they must savor this view
as it soared with such pride, white tail spread so wide.
Too soon it will end and let the cold creep back in.
Even now it had started to glide.

And, breaking the spell they bid sad farewell
to its visage as southward it soared.
“In all of my life,” said the man to the wife,
“There was never a sweeter reward.”

They'll always remember that watch in November,
with a sense of utter delight.
Even nature's harsh way can't tarnish that day.
It was truly a marvelous flight!

David Holt
March 1984

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