A Flight Transferred – a poem by Pauline Duchesneau

A Flight Transferred

A Northern Flicker lay
feet curled and still
on the roadside where I walked.

So sad, thought I.
Next instant, Awed, by the
unmarred form so close beside.

Details of the artistry
inspired by eclectic mood
that creation day…

Dramatic contrasting gentle
in style unlike others.
Diverse, their own painted cloaks.

This sweep of pure night, high on chest,
a bib of honor above darkest round
spots on each tiny, pale breast feather’s tip.

Emboldened, the back of neck by
shock of brilliant candy apple red, all the more vibrant
bordering soft gray.

Dark bands on mellow brown back,
underside of tail hidden, unknown,
a burnished butterscotch.

Kindly buff of face, throat, and neck,
strong point of beak lined by
another midnight drop onto cheek.

So benign it seemed to me,
this being of moments before,
whose call and percussive wing-flap familiar.

These features I’d gift to admire,
from bittersweet inertness.
I walked on, new flight of wonder now in me.


Pauline Duchesneau’s writings of various sorts have appeared in Dime Show Review, Pilcrow & Dagger, Adelaide, Riggwelter, and Rosette Maleficarum, among others. Her first novel of magical realism seeks its final draft. Pauline’s greatest inspiration wells from her gratitude for the myriad daily gifts.

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