HONEY LIGHT – a poem by Kathryn MacDonald


When you wake in honey light
linger where river meets the curve
of a bay round as a waxing moon
where the pearl-feathered heron
glides with outstretched wings
alights in weedy shallows
to become just another shadowed reed
perfectly still in solitude.

Notice her concentration
how she stands on stilty legs
in harmony with time and place
like the pause between piano notes
the space that makes the music
…..the downward pause of Billie Holiday
…..Cohen’s gap that lets the light come in
stands alert and dreamy at water’s edge.

Do not rush through the honey light
but flow in the effortless action
and inaction of night becoming day
of the moon’s light giving way to the sun
and the sun’s rising and sinking
into the ebb and flow of the sea
step into the shallows
stand in wu wei.….a heron-woman.


Kathryn MacDonald is the author of A Breeze You Whisper (poems, 2011) and Calla & Édourd (fiction, 2009). She has a second poetry manuscript currently seeking a publisher. Recent poems have been published in Orbis(U.K.), Devour: Art & Lit Canada, and on Spirit of the Hills’ “Pandemic” literary blog. Website: https://KathrynMacDonald.com.


  1. Beautiful poem. It is good to find language worthy of the heron’s stillness.


  2. morgan says:

    A perfect first stanza! A lovely poem.


  3. Janet Krauss says:

    Exquisite poem, every line takes me with it as the heron and its surroundings are perfectly
    sketched in words.


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