jdubqca

poetry by j matthew waters

Archive for the tag “birds”

the bird and her fiddle


listen carefully there is a bird
 warbling from the moon
  how she got there is anyone’s guess

is she yellow or is she red or blue
 plump or thin or somewhere in between
  can you tell by listening carefully
   to the tenor of her fiddle

there is a feel to her presence
 sublime and pleasantly inviting
  when will the world stop spinning
   and listen carefully to her message




december two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

lesser gods and weaker minds


looking for something new
I gaze out the 10th floor window
catching a glimpse of October
waiting in the wings
closely held by unsuspecting vultures
cleverly disguised as angels
coaxing me to open my heart and soul
[and inch closer to the edge]
in exchange promising riper fruit
and even brighter sunrises




september two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the dawn chorus


first there was the final dream
approaching morning light
bedroom curtains breathing in and out
mimicking my own circadian rhythm
and welcoming the dawn chorus

birds beginning to think it’s spring
how they invade my subconscious
pretending to be children
reincarnated from fallen leaves
singing from the tallest trees

one morning that will be me
having not awakened from the dream
free falling like a leaf among many
reaching out and believing
finally participating in the dawn chorus




july two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

aerial conversations


I forgive and forget
it’s easy to do
or so the birds of the sky
tell me so

they speak to me often
believing I’m not listening
but I fool them
and take everything in

there’s nothing to forgive
ergo nothing to forget
I keep telling myself
like a man in a trance

when I’m alone
the birds of the sky
keep me company
they think I don’t notice
but I most certainly do

as time passes
they learn to trust and believe
feeding from my hand
as I stand like a statue in the wind
my eyes fixed
above the setting sun

they speak about life
and speak about death
but when I ask what will come next
their chatting becomes silence
and I am left to imagine
all on my own





may two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

unlikely guardians


who will speak to me next
as if in tomorrow
standing here on the ground
looking up
bird’s nest in the open air
curious cat in my peripheral

I realize I’m not alone anymore
it only feels that way
stepping out of my skin
for the very first time
and looking back
through a bottomless mirror

so it seems the bird and cat
have been chosen
to encourage me on
one pushing
the other pulling
both bickering
in their own beautiful way





march two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

january thaw


winter winds unusually warm
bringing back birds I’ve not seen
in what seems like ages
suddenly returning in waves

I’ve been flying and foraging
for nearly a fortnight now
blending in with a family of
black-capped chickadees

I almost forgot what is was like
to be amongst a family
of five or fifty or five hundred
coexisting effortlessly




january two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the last migration


nobody talks about birds
growing older
but here we are
sitting on park benches
bread crumbs in our hands

this sitting down is for birds
I say out loud
and you naturally agree
without speaking a word

it’s a warm winter’s day
and our shadows
are barely visible on the
black asphalt
like skinny icicles hanging
ever slowly changing




december two thousand eighteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

cunning like a songbird


in the kitchen uncaged canaries
chat amongst themselves
swapping oft-told tales and
keeping secrets from
black & white cat crouched
against shadowy wall

outside red-breasted nuthatches
mimic dog barking at jet airliner
piercing cumulus clouds
waiting for aforementioned feline
to give them another chance
at target practice




december two thousand eighteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserve

out of my life


oh captive bird
is that the only song
you know
sing sing sing to me
a lullaby

oh captive bird
serenading me to sleep
door’s wide open
why oh why
won’t you leave

oh captive bird
finally scheming
in my dreams
can feel you flying
like never before




november two thousand eighteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

mirror for the soul


black on grey aviator high in flight
solitary and void of thought
soaring and sharing potentialities
to shadowy souls down below
their earthbound eyes
transfixed at effortless emotions
smiles forming and fingers pointing
curiously considering the possible
inevitability of one day doing the same




october two thousand eighteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

end of speed limit


roadside singer
quite colorful and
resting comfortably atop
curved guard rail
counting blue cars
and red motorcycles
racing by like clockwork
ruffling feathers
and drowning out
magical sounds
inspired by god herself




may two thousand eighteen
copyright j matthew waters
all right reserved

blackbirds biding their time


twilighty on an october evening
cats a’meowing and quiet moon
maybe making an appearance

I’ve seen you in this race before
maybe it was ten years ago
or maybe it was yesterday

these pockmarks on my cheeks
they don’t mean a thing
I regret you ever saw them

those moons we rarely see
orbiting worlds we barely know
absolutely belong here

and why you decided to go
long before your time
has everything to do with them



october two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

like a canary in a cage


anyone can write the monday blues
how the fog maybe lifts by noon
smartphones unable to upgrade
all on their own

the list grows longer whether it’s
monday or not
liberty or death is
(a matter of) life and breath
invisible wounds like words
perhaps self-inflicted or
suspiciously accidental

there is an artist who really
knows for sure
but they aren’t playing in any
kind of rhythm and blues band

oh no they ain’t singing
like a canary in a cage
dreaming of the sky




december two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

birdsong in my mind


sorrowful soul mate
casting nets
from a sparse pine
comes up empty time and again

determined to move on
one tree at a time
the song forever weaves
through solitary twilight


april two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

passing the torch


if the birds don’t rule this world
nobody knows who does

they fly in and out of dreams
as if they had been here before

first to awaken they stir the frost
with slow motion wings
opening promises above the clouds

in prehistoric times they fed without
fear of twenty gauge buckshot

back in the future they learn
to penetrate outer atmospheres

they’ve seen it all and they pass their
knowledge onto future generations
long after migrating from this world



july two thousand fifteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

changing of the seasons


little bird with no song to sing
asks the wind permission
to borrow a tune
she remembered hearing the
morning of her birth

it was a little ditty a child
could pick up
rife with high notes
and often mistaken as a flute
or a fife or a piccolo

the wind carried her voice
far beyond the hills
touching the loneliest of creatures
in search of comfort and warmth
before the inevitable frost



may two thousand fifteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the cry of the starling


on this night of nights a lost
starling sings his lonely song
as a pale moon chases
venus high above the tallest trees
and faint stars transit the unknown

on this night of nights a natural
flame flickers and streams
chain reacting and traveling swiftly
to the four corners of the world
sparked by the cry of the lonely starling
ushering in a brand new light


december two thousand fourteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

angels of mercy


birds of all nations storm
war-torn suburbia
switchblades and derringers
concealed under wing
blanketing rooftops and lining live wires
waiting patiently for night to fall

predawn fog smothers the moon
and silences the stars
cloaking angels of mercy
and their effortless wings
zeroing in on and sweeping away
newly orphaned refugees


november two thousand fourteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

catbird singing (in the dead of night)


catbird chirps along stone walls
saying look at me
follow me
this way where the water flows

trim and proper in tailored suit
catbird mimics
moon walking
whistling across dance floor

tricks up sleeves and a beak
full of pranks
catbird screams
like a wee lad crying wolf

one eye on brighter side
falling sun
invites night flight
catbird chasing brand new day



august two thousand fourteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

birdhouse


in your free time bright ideas
arise out of thin air
and fizzle into nothingness

more often than not
trial and error leads you
tossing your thoughts to the birds
and you wonder if they will feed on them
or regurgitate them like earthworms

but if you’re industrious enough
you can incubate them
study them
nurture them
transform them with
wood and glue and nails

on lazy weekend afternoons
you sit and listen to birds happily
singing to their little ones
and you realize it’s best
to deconstruct your inner thoughts
and rebuild them into something
better than before




july two thousand fourteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

true interpretations


it rained all night
and while I slept sharks
swam in circles around my body
either protecting me from myself
or saving me for later

awakened by wind sweeping in
morning sunshine
I took to the kitchen
coffee maker abuzz
birds of the air outside my window
like chatty statuettes
swapping old stories

settling back into real-time solitude
I revisit casualties
both foreign and domestic
making headlines on print and
television and internet
their bodies dead or dying
my prayers hoping they find
doves soaring on the other side

unable to shake the current
course of events
I stare into my oversized cup
of morning petroleum
dorsal fins circling above the surface
daring me to find out the true
interpretation to my dream


june two thousand fourteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

ode to the sea bird


bird of prey
invisible in flight
dies a hero’s death
rises on the other side

bird renewed
transgressing in time
dives past new moons
attacks as meteorites

bird of the ark
born inside a lab
circles among the clouds
destined to find land


june two thousand fourteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

morning blue


I love to play the piccolo
just before the birds awaken

my own imagination
enters their waking dreams

before the song is over
just as the sun smiles
trillions of feathers
usher in the morning blue


november two thousand thirteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

tomorrow’s sunrise


wake me up and tell me
to eat something nutritious
like a bowl of peacefulness

wake me up and ask me
to read something beautiful
that will make me mindful
all roads lead to somewhere

teach me to wake up
with the birds as my alarm
while traces of morning light
illuminates my inner thoughts

teach me to wake up
to the fact that one day I will be
looking down on a world
that is no longer mine
smiling knowing I left my mark
a few are certain to find

wake me up
so I may grind some beans
and share them with you
on a rainy saturday morning

I may not always be here
but I will always
wake up
if not here
then somewhere else
where you are certain to find me



october two thousand thirteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

catch me if you can


the bird in the stream
loves to scream at midnight
when deep in her sleep

she dreams of elegant legs
to-die-for tail feathers
and a graceful neckline

no longer interested in
fly-by-night playboys
she catches her limit
before the rooster’s crow


august two thousand thirteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

eight hundred flowers


on the most sorrowful day floral arrangements
accompany the winding road

as the birds of the field sing their joyful songs
nearby wildflowers weep and sway

newly clipped roses wrapped in paper produce
smiles once believed long gone

wherever a child is knee-deep in raw color
never let time pass away



april two thousand thirteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

a call to arms


the circle invitation
echoes from miles around
from a solitary flyer
high above the flooded
creek near oxfordshire

days of endless rain create
casualties on the ground
ripe for the taking
by just about anything
remotely intelligent

the size of the circle
grows wing by black wing
gaining strength and sailing
like a school of fish
in the overcast sky

once reconnaissance
confirms an opening
the dark circle transforms
into a ruthless carnivore
spiraling toward the earth




april two thousand thirteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

return flight


she found me weeping
on the river rock
my breathing shallow
my vision focusing
on distant memories
of an endless sky

i had no recollection
of the terrible beating
my body had taken
had barely remembered
how she lifted me up
and carried me away

she used her gifts
to mend my lonely heart
and tattered wings
restoring my will
to take to the sky
and find my way home



november two thousand twelve
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

first blanket


the ancient ocean gave birth
to fertile earth admired from afar
worked by hands never seen

from its soil a new creation evolved
assisted by elements capable
of producing wind and fire

seedlings awakened and stretched
and instinctively sought to reach
the warmth of the outer dome

brown and green gradually gathered
throughout the valley
weaving itself into a blanket
of outlandish colors



november two thousand twelve
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

little bird


little bird with little love
sits atop a lemon tree
hopes to turn into a dove
and live his life with ease

little bird with little friends
feeds upon a giving heart
longs to soar and pretend
his tweets are like a lark

little bird with little dreams
slowly heals his broken wing
soon to feast on tangerines
ripening across the spring



september two thousand twelve
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

Quetzalcoatl


The Feathered Serpent
ruled land and sky
a supernatural deity
worshiped for his duality.
When the Fourth Sun
perished in the flood
he traveled deep
beneath the Earth
created a Fifth World
by espousing his own blood
through self-inflicted wounds
to transfuse the bones
of the living dead.



june two thousand twelve
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

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