A Solitary Blue Heron Stands


Shore Bird ~ Philip Brent Harris


A work in progress by Philias the Lesser

How lush the valley grows in Spring
With green refulgent at every hand.
Where flowers bloom and fruit ripens,
While the bees and birds commune.
The farms stand empty and forlorn.

All the men and women walk the lane.
They look both hungry and insane.

What dark vision fills my sight?
Minor chords as counterpoint.
Or bright happy tunes, which no way
Fit the mood of our lamentation.

Still, a small flame of hope burns within
My hurt, my heart, illuminates my core.
Despite anything I hear or learn from
Those angels and demons, flickering
From the blue god crouched in the corner
Or hanging boldly, with pride of place.
Dominating the deity’s designated wall.
They both sing promises I wish to hear.
Until they attack me, make me crawl
Across sharp fields littered with shattered truth.
Jagged words the will not fit into my ears.
Jammed in my eyes till drips blood down my face.
My sight and senses obscured by a red haze.

All the men and women walk the lane.
They look both hungry and insane.

Yes, I love, and I have been loved.
The sweet smile, the greedy embrace.
And yet, I ever ponder tragedy lurking
Around every corner, beneath each rock,
Since mayhem and madness glaze our eyes.
Surprise, those with power to rule tell lies.

All the men and women listen without ears
And they scream because they cannot hear.

The flickering blue tells me of death.
A whale that rots on a local beach.
115 degrees. Mercury climbs the wall.
Scientists nod together; no one heeds.
Urge us to claim sanity. It’s now or never.
We site all our immediate needs. Say,
“It’s not our problem.  We’ve struggles
all our own, Not our job to fix the weather.”

With ranches and ranchers left bereft.
No fences to mend or stock to tend.
They see the wild creatures who reject all
Overtures they make because they offend.

They watch the walkers in the lane
Envy filled that they must abstain.

No idols or icons we create or worship
Or teachers that we claim or claimed
Will save us from ourselves this time.
It is all so incredibly obscene. I, too,
Live within our daily illusion, knowing
I am older and better off than many.
I drink my morning cup of Yorkshire Gold
Feeling guilty my ideals did not become
Not only my own but also world reality.

I refuse to simple molder in my cave.
I’ll capture whatever nature remains.
Neither days nor hours nor minutes now
Can reverse the path we chose long ago.
Most of us unwittingly; we failed to listen.
Until our time for decisions and revisions
Vanished into the lesions of our elisions.

All this while I sit and watch the harbor.
Wondering what my life has become.
Enough, I understand is all I need, yet
I generated it to such a small degree.

I fade and fail, though I continue. Striving
To craft clever enough communions
Of words and images that are mine alone.
Theme and variations should work as well.
Sometimes I dance within inches.
Near to my dream but at the edge.
The fatal edge of art, life and reason.

I grow closer to my final supper,
Where life and death sit down together.
They laugh, point out our misperceptions.
We laugh as well, because we remember.
We recall our prior choices and analyze
The instances we succeeded and failed.
We wonder when, if ever, we will
rise again and brave the luminous portal.
For now, I say. “Pass the butter and I
Will feed you with my runcible spoon.”

I stand and walk on, lost in thought.
A bicycle bell jingles, startles me.
The dog turns in circles as it follows,
Deciding if I am friend or foe.
Then, I am forgotten, unimportant.

A solitary Blue Heron stands majestically
in the shallows. As unconcerned with
my values as with the smell of seaweed.
Ignoring the passing people and their noise.

All the men and women fall down, play dead
In hopes braver children climb from their heads.

The heron lives a more direct life than ours,
Concerned with food and brood,
Migration and its changeable daily weather.
Whose salvation time and genetic mutation
Alone will choose. For us, I believe,
We have birthed the final generation.

They might save themselves, if they choose.
And they truly have nothing left to lose.


People Over Politics, World Over Wealth!

Peace is Purpose, Nonviolence is Strength,

Diversity is Unity, Empathy is Empowerment

Unite the World!


See more of my creative offerings at:

Philip Brent Harris Fine Art, Digital Art and Photography


Shore Bird ~ Philip Brent Harris


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