Francis Duggan

A Spring Night In Duhallow - Poem by Francis Duggan

Like small motor bike purring it's way along
Across the sky the nightjar's churring song
The bird known as 'the swallow of the night'
With mouth agape enjoying his flying insect diet.

And o'er the bog the male snipe flies around
And with his wings and tail he makes the strangest sound
And all of the time as around and round he fly
Sounds like a goat is bleating in the sky.

The moonlit fields of old Duhallow quiet
And barn owl silent hunter of the night
In soundless wings above the meadow fly
For him to live small creature has to die.

The hungry vixen barking on the hill
Her voice that carry distance wild and shrill
Her fast growing cubs are playing outside their den
Cloaked by the gorse in remote furzy glen.

Old brock the badger ponderous and slow
Snuff for worms and beetles by hedgerow
Before he start his search for food each night
He lines his sett with fresh grass at twilight.

With water to his knees in upland rill
The fishing heron standing statue still
And in any case his patience is repaid
When small trout swim out towards him from the shade.

The long eared owl a nocturnal bird of prey
Is only seldom seen in light of day
The country person know him by his cry
Is hooting somewhere in the woods nearby.

And mother birds are sleeping in their nest
With eggs or young kept warm beneath their breast
And stars above the bogland twinkling bright
And the moonlit fields of old Duhallow quiet.

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Poem Submitted: Saturday, February 9, 2008

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