To the belly of an osprey
I saw him at a distance at first,
as if he was, momentarily, my own shadowy reflection,
and in retrospect, it was an arrogance to gaze at him
mid-hover and arch-winged upon a thermal,
watching him, lower, watching me.
His descent - in a hypnotism of physics -
a swoop, head stooped, head dive.
But I did not see the twisted reverse
of his manoeuvre or his white legs and talons flash
beneath him, only their sudden plunge
and thrust at me in the water.
The throb of my trout heart pulsated every scale
of me and in flight, fish-soul and body beating, I think -
but I am still alive, I am still alive.
And I have never seen the world
as an osprey can, with the lofty precision
of yellow needling eyes, whilst he has observed
my dappled universe of blue shingle
and bright water many times before.
Held tight, sharp in clutch of flint
until I am swung to the hook of his beak,
and in the ice-grip of trauma, I see, in that moment,
that being broken can make a poet of us all,
though I am swallowed, swift and torn;
and only of passing satisfaction
to the belly of an osprey.
Image from pixabay.