Out on the mud flats, a killdeer with red eye ring
plucks his way along the water-soaked land.
He’s alone in this wide field as dusk falls.
He runs forward in short bursts,
a few steps and then he stops.
He turns away invisible,
his feathers blend brown and gray with the land.
We wait. In a moment or two, he runs forward again,
bobbing his head slightly,
his black double-banded breast a beacon,
his sharp cry piercing the silence.
We walk on, a simple Sunday walk
and stop for birding now and then.
The days pass, grasses grow,
a killdeer returns and nests,
but how that cry lingers.