Tag Archives: Red Tail Hawk

Blame It on the Drought

It’s not often that you see two different species of hawks in such close proximity to one another, calmly waiting on the edge of a water trough.  But this morning while feeding the horses, they let me get close enough to use my ‘point and shoot’.  I defer to the birders, but it looks to me like a Red Tail on the left and a Harrier Hawk on the right.




The wells run deeper now
past the Pleistocene and into salt
at half a million bucks a pop
for the last of the water
as the Valley collapses
under the weight
of farming investors
for the moment
leaving Mom and Pop
and forty acres
high and dry
with one last roll
for agribusiness—
one last extraction
from a thirsty future.

No dirt farmers left
to turn the earth,
make sweet love
with furrows
and pruning sheers
for a crop to harvest,
wobbly wagon loads
to railroad towns
grown bright and urban
in a couple of lifetimes
farming the future.





Left for the wind to clear
hard clay, soft remains
of a Red Tail Hawk.




IMG_1662 - Version 2


                               Is it not by his high superfluousness we know
                               Our God?

                                     – Robinson Jeffers (“The Excesses of God”)

A boy goes outside looking for adventure
on new ground, catching disappearing glimpses
of her skirts through the trees, and he is ready
to tame the West where there are no rules—
ready to leave his mark upon the landscape.

After a lifetime, all the hackneyed, black
and whited-hatted heroics sound like the same
song, boom or bust flashes in the pan
that end badly, sadly leaving her abandoned
flesh as landmarks in a state of disgrace.

An old man goes outside looking for other
frontiers to get lost within, to follow wild
details that teem with heart in all things—
hawk and stone, tree and grass—to be assured
of the rainbowed superfluousness of his God.