Odes and Lamentations by Mari Fitzpatrick

To him she appears smaller than she is
when he stands beside her meeting her gaze,
communicating intention. Until she disturbed
by attraction looks away, and allows him to settle in.

For when advance is made and accepted,
definite steps pursue time's honour,
and man awaits permission to step out of himself.
Is he led by his sense of one, his
knowing of fit? But a woman will insist on
action, and unless he commits she'll leave.

See any cob watch pen turn and preen then
look away, her downcast eyes and ruffled
feathers encouraging his pursuit. When he
enters her space, he checks that her gaze
speaks of welcomes before he connects
at a level governed by a similar part
that knows what's right.

Then pen disturbed by attraction
will look away, and cob will await permission
to proceed. And while waiting he'll lift
out of himself to float above her, and while
looking down his eyes will feast on her line.

It's this swan's song that contains
nature's rule. But their choice is for life
and they know that it doesn't happen in heat
of attraction, but in sacred space
where ode and lamentations are writ.

Mari, 2008

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