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Monday, April 18, 2016

Common Mergansers

Hello again.

I'll share some poems on my blog from now on, but only ones which have been previously published by literary journals. The reason? Most journals consider posting on a blog to be "publishing" and will not accept anything which they consider to have been previously published.

This poem was included in the Summer 2015 Volume 46, No. 182 of The Antigonish Review. I am happy that TAR accepted one of my poems and thank them for that opportunity.

Common Mergansers

We heard them coming,
              notes out of tune,
                           flying low and straight,

racing their shadows
              over the water.
                            They splashed down

to drift and to fish,
              in front of the cottage.
                           "There's something about

these ducks," you said,
             "they take every damn trout.
                           Fishing isn't as good

as it used to be.
              Nothing is."
                            I felt the mud

cold sludge
              between my toes,
                           the strike of your hook.

A friend told me that fisher folk hate Common Merganser ducks as they are capable of cleaning out entire fishing holes with their hooked bills and efficient diving tactics.

I hope you enjoy this poem. I think it captures those moments in relationships when we each say unkind things to one another. Because we know each other so well, we know where to sink the hook.

You can find out more about The Antigonish Review literary journal by clicking on this link. Thank you to TAR for publishing my poem.


Jane Tims said...

I like the idea of the birds racing their shadows across the water ... Exactly as it appears! Jane

Carol Steel said...

Thanks, Jane. Do you remember pointing out to me that Mergansers were despised by fisher folk for cleaning out the fishing holes?