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At once a voice arose among

      The bleak twigs overhead

In a full-hearted evensong

      Of joy illimited…

The Darkling Thrush, Thomas Hardy


I was standing at our front gate at twilight

with the people I love the most – wife,

daughter, granddaughter, each of them by turns

gossiping and bantering the way

some families do – beneath low, stormy clouds

still blush tinged from the westering sun

when we heard goose cries as if from all

compass points, and suddenly the first skein

appeared over the roof, and another,

and another, their cries echoing

throughout the skyey amphitheatre:

pink-footed geese from the Arctic Ocean’s margins

wintering among us.




© Copyright David Selzer
2 Responses
  • Kate Harrison
    January 26, 2018

    We are under the route the geese take between Delamere Forest and the Marshes. I love to hear them coming and going.

  • Alison Robson
    January 26, 2018

    I’m wondering when you wrote your poem ‘Of Joy’, since just this week, stepping out of my car I heard quacking and looked up to see geese flying over. Such an uplifting sight at the end of a working day.

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