Tuesday, April 1, 2014

The Flock

Down in Clackamette Park at the confluence of the Clackamas and Wilamette Rivers where I have had occasion to feed the geese, the view is similar to this image. As mentioned in the poem, there are more geese than this in the flock.

The longer the feeding goes the more geese show up and you can end up with a hundred geese around you, maybe more. They argue among each other as to who takes precedence but if you feed one over the other that doesn't seem to matter all that much. They do slobber, so that if you feed them directly you will get slimy fingers. Their beaks will press a little hard on you but not really a bite. It is quite an experience to be surrounded by a hundred geese. I like it but not enough to repeat all that often.

The Oregon City area is a stopping place for the flocks of Canada Geese who hang out in many of the parks and in many large grassy areas including alongside highways. The flocks will go about their business, everybody head down except one or two who are on sentry duty. The dogs love to chase the geese who are quite impressive as they part the flock for the dogs and for people too. If the alarm is given they all take off. That's even more impressive and noisy with the sound of wings if you are close enough.

The Flock

The geese took my hope
but handed it back
demanding bread, yellow beaked
with slobbering rims,
goose tongues loose, pointed
my way and I'm glad
I have some old crumbs.

I count over forty geese
all lined up aiming
at me with coal black
(I should say obsidian)

Why they gave me
back my hope, I don't
know. But it smells of goose oil,
of warm mother geese
and I find I don't
mind the feathers, not at all.

‎March ‎30, ‎2014 7:39 PM

This poem written in reply to Irene's poem a cumulus dream


  1. Their tongues are funny and a little unnerving aren't they? Birds can give you hope I think.

    Meant to thank you for your last comment, sending your Sinagaporean friend towards Compasses.

  2. I've been spending a fair bit of time on my friend Eric's boat. The geese are always in residence....honking at each other, or me, I can't be sure. But they are always in pairs. Never one alone. I wonder, do they mate for life????

    1. some do. I am no expert but I know I have read that or seen it in some movie about migration or something. Hope you are gaining on it all.


The chicken crossed the road. That's poultry in motion.

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