Life With Quail
When I am standing knee as height to brush,
with rented home in city, life of words,
with raven flying near small hummingbirds,
behind each mall a simple voice of thrush.
In silent gesture kneel on city plot
to order backyard garden found astray,
my memory of higher desert play
before my life here in this city lot.
To miss the secret life of mountain quail,
the dance of each birds curled and black head plume
to shake their creamy chestnut scale on breasts,
each covey's foliage like a winded sail,
each sage blossom had its own living room
of shallow depressions of quiet nests.
To those of us who daily get to hear
the loud American "chi-ca-go" chants
beyond the squash and newly gardened plants
a mother waits to feed her young when clear.
A gathering of coveys in the yard
attracted to spare seeds and small insect,
a day to see how many to collect,
each mothers plume to straighten as a guard.
While dad and daughter watch through windows closed,
young rabbits seem to chase the quail away
to nibble on seed that's their very own.
We observe in fear of being exposed,
a ritual we lived out every day.
I must make sure this city seed is sown.