the falcon bagged, subdued,its broken wingits doom if not forman kindness
blinded by a leather capthat clamped fierce beakterror greater than its pain, it trembledawaiting killing stroke
cringing from the smellof ether, unable to fleeit knew not the wing setor stolen time
cap removed, wing stiff, it glaredfalcon-suspiciouslifted as it could its shoulderdragging a splint
confined in wallsit stabbed proffered nuggetsdipped still water in a bowlnot running, yet fresh
lulled by exhaustionand the absence of imminentwarnings of dangerit slept
awoke in quiet — no hum, no buzz,no twitter, screech or songodd, unsettling respiteagain it slept
days without hunting, yetnourished, shelteredit eyed the man who camewith soft words and food
lifting shoulder, strutting nowstanding proud in silenceit eyed the manand gathered strength
spread, lifted, lowered wings in stirringglide across the roomalit upon his shoulderbeak sharp beside his eye
unmoving, but not unmovedthey waited, neither hunter nor preyman understanding falcon’s silentcry freedom
In an inconvenient corner of the worldelephants languishedbeside their dying lake.
Long ago, before the drought,they’d trumpeted joyously from its depths,spouting fountains as they swam.They’d wallowed in its muddy shore,before the drought dragged on.
Now they milled, gently proddingan infant conceivedwhen the lake shimmered vast.
Urgently they willed her to rise,impelled by their needto seek life-sustaining water.
She could not.
Finally, heads bowed,they turned awayso the herdwould not perish from the earth.She watched, silent.
One turned backto lie down beside her infant.
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