Finding Bats in the Spring Wood at Twilight

Finding Bats in the Spring Wood at Twilight

Barbara A Meier

Inspired by “Finding the Cat in a Spring Night at Midnight” by Pattiann Rogers

It takes a certain hearing, to discern the bat from the bird
in a late afternoon, when the light diminishes Woodrat Mountain.
I hear the swoop of wings beating the soft air
of twilight, humming in the down-sweep
of a dusky afternoon breeze

An aerial battlefield of nectar and mosquito,
with the feeding buzz of the fringed myotis,
and the whir of the dive-bombing male rufous hummingbird.

Bright Venus comes out to play
with the silver fishing hook moon,
Pacific tree frogs bellow their desire in her cold light,
cicadas hammering away at their legs:
a symphony of sound crescendoing
then pianissimo
when they discern my steps into the night.

I lose sight of the magical creatures living in the night.
Pausing the recording of my life in their silence
of fear,
waiting for the confidence to come back;
first, one whir,
a solitary croak,
then joining in an adagio of night wings born at the
of the forest
up to the meadow
sliding gray to brown to black.

Barbara A. Meier