The unrequited duet of the Pacific Koel

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he calls
all night
in tones
that rise
that fall:
she’s gone
she’s there
he calls
before
she calls
be there
before
be gone
again
until
so late
at last
we fall
we sleep
& dream
a world
like this
a tree
a bough
may fall
but there
within
the dark
red eye
sees all
sees call
again
until
he stops

the quiet rushes in
&

we dream
a world
like this
that tree
that eye
sees all
the call
so soon
& on,
the night
the call
the bird
the eye
we go.

come dawn
come day
the bird
the call
she’s gone
he calls
& on
& on
& on


Image: Male Australian Koel aka Storm Bird (Eudynamys (orientalis) cyanocephalus), by Lance @ Flickr. The Koel’s arrival is associated with summer, storms and sleepless nights in Eastern & Northern Australia. Posted at Dverse, the poets’ pub where Jilly is hosting and (coincidentally) asks us write on repetition. And if you want to hear the Koel’s song you can come round to my place (or listen here).

16 thoughts on “The unrequited duet of the Pacific Koel

  1. The form that you use gives this a feel of falling – perhaps the sense of falling asleep. Excellent use of repetition! Thanks for introducing me to this bird – hope you don’t mind if I don’t invite him over for tea!

    Like

  2. i like reading poems like these that have a tempo of its own that cannot be denied even to the most tone deaf…like me. i felt i was on the very edge of that wing of a bird that came,and went and flew and finally was still

    Liked by 1 person

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