These ghost owls gaze upon us




These ghost owls gaze upon us, ghastly patient:

They see enough to wait, and not to stir.

You suppose their ways are so serenely ancient

They are hardly there.


But the omen often lacks its howl at night,

And stares out silences on waiting branches:

At the moment of attack, all owls mid-flight

Are death’s own dancers.



There is a common Western anthropomorphic adage that owls are wise, doddery, gentlemanly old duffers. But there are few sights more balletic and deathly than an owl mid-hunt, its talons poised, wings aloft.



2 thoughts on “These ghost owls gaze upon us

  1. Dear James An absolutely beautiful poem. You have caught an owl thoroughly in poetry. I sometimes hear them overhead at night and occasionally flying low along the lanes just after dusk. I am going to Sandwich Bird Observatory this evening for birds and orchids. Your poem is such a good owl experience, Thanks, Gran Sent from my iPad


    • Thank you so much, although I am sorry that I have not been able to write much poetry recently. I have been terribly busy, I am afraid. Hope that all is well down in the beautiful south. Lots of love to you all! xxx

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