Hemocyanin

Standard

You and I

have new blood,

The oxygen we need,

pulled from each breath,

is cradled

in a molecular nest,

and bound in iron:

scarlet Hemoglobin.

But our ancient ancestors,

and the still-living

relics of the copper age,

still hold to

their old ways.

It courses through their veins,

blue

like the patina

on a penny,

that’s seen

better days.

Red blood caught on,

but ours is not the only way.

Our cousins in the deep,

also well-travelled,

use azure Hemocyanin

it still works it’s magic,

just like ours

but matches their lifestyle,

working tirelessly

undaunted by cold,

darkness,

and depth.

Flesh and blood,

follow their own

rhyme and reason,

what falls out of fashion

can often still function,

in the right place,

at the right time

and in the right hands.

Whale Watching

Standard

“Ready?”

Take a deep breath,

you’ll want to make it last.

We all traversed the undercurrents,

and took shots in the dark.

The sharks played chicken with us,

though there’s safety in numbers,

we didn’t need the hassle

so we went fishing.

We grabbed a bite to eat

And did some networking,

with a few like-minded pods.

“Let’s take a break”

in the tropics,

we met the locals

the coral shimmered in the choppy light

coming through

crystal-clear water.

“Let’s make waves by the bay,”

Anchored boats watched

as half of us

caused a ruckus

and the rest lazed by,

until we saw Sailors’ Delight.

“Let’s get going,”

“Same time tomorrow?”

“I’ll have my people call your people,”

“listen for our code.”

Fond farewells

echo in the distance

as they await

another day.

Tuatara

Standard

I’m from an ancient bloodline,

patient and pensive,

and to my surprise,

time flies,

regardless of whether or not

you’re having fun.

Everyone I related to

left long ago,

and all that remains

are these fraud lizards,

with my third eye,

I see right through them.

Meanwhile,

here I am,

in exile,

under a rock.

I’m from an ancient bloodline,

strong and tenacious,

I spend my days digging trenches,

eating spiders

and hissing at tourists,

what a complete indignity.

My ancestors,

walked shoulder-to-shoulder

with giants and beasts,

now that there’s finally some room to breathe,

It seems there’s less space for us than ever.

I’m from an ancient bloodline

peaceful and wise,

and for old times sake,

I’d like to revisit the Halcyon days,

and have the sun blocked out once more,

an equal playing field.

Trust me on this,

the world needs it.

Wading For It

Standard

Beware of any oasis,

because nowhere in this world of oddities,

will you cross the same river twice.

Try, try, try, as you might,

leaning into the current,

cannot bring you to the past-

grasping for the rain drops,

will not help you

stand steady and weather a storm.

No matter how torn,

you may feel,

there are times you must leave it all behind,

you’ll know it when you see it.

But so be it,

and fear not,

you never have to leave green pastures,

if you can bring them with you,

in tempests and torrents,

deserts, meadows, canyons, summits.

So long as you’re still going,

you are always exactly

where you need to be.

If you’re a fish out of water,

I really hope you’re a mudskipper.

Olm

Standard

Life in the undercurrent,

isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

If I could still see,

I’d tell you all about it.

But I’m not complaining, believe me,

I get by.

No one bothers you down here,

unless they’re really asking for it.

Lazily,

though I prefer “efficiently,”

Sliding through nooks and crannies.

I spend my time,

sidewinding,

along dark-as-night,

limestone-lined,

walls to find,

fissures filled with my friends,

hopefully I’ll be the first to find food.

Life here is slow, simple,

beautiful in its brutality,

we’re up to our necks,

in fresh,

cold water,

and little else.

I wish I could tell you more,

or give you some clues,

but you can’t see what I do.

Brood Parasites

Standard

The tools of the trade:

Cryptic plumage,

Hawkish mannerisms,

And a steady supply,

Of child soldiers.

The cuckoo lies in wait,

Standing stealthily,

Avoiding strife,

With her victim’s eventual lapse,

She strikes.

Though they care not for their neighbors,

They do have a knack,

For finding babysitters,

Despite their reputation,

As impolite guests.

The screaming chick,

Sounds like the clutch,

Of hungry children,

It jettisoned.

On the other hand,

In the other hemisphere,

The cowbird makes little effort,

To make its egg inconspicuous,

Instead it relies on mob mentality.

The mom pays a visit,

To her nest of choice,

Which will be destroyed,

At the first sign of resistance,

To their alimony.

If there’s any acrimony,

It isn’t apparent,

As the often very different parent,

Raises the imposter.

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IMAGE CREDITS: 

https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildlife/bird-and-wildlife-guides/bird-a-z/c/cuckoo/

http://jasonking.net/site/brown-headed-cowbird/

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Migration Patterns

Standard

Seven mallard ducks flew in the familiar v-shaped formation they take when coming from or going to far-off places.

The land they cast shadows on grew more and more sparse the further they traversed.

“What a spring this has been,” the Second Lieutenant said with pride, he was sick that day.

The group was well-fed and riding high.

“I know,” piped the First Lieutenant enthusiastically, “I even got some french fries!”

At the apex of the V,  the Colonel glanced at the Lieutenant Colonel incredulously.

“Love those things,” said the Captain.

“Guys, watch yourself out here,” sounded the Lieutenant Colonel.

“Yeah, humans were handing out bread like it was going out of fashion,” said the omega male, no one acknowledged him.

The leader stayed silent.

“We had the park all to ourselves! It was a great spring,” said the Major

There was a whooshing sound, then a smack.

The captain looked behind him, shed contour feathers twirled in the vortex of displaced air.

“Well,” the Colonel said, “seems like our idle chit-chat got our Second Lieutenant eaten by a peregrine falcon,” he said in monotone, “let’s try to keep our mouths shut for a little while, huh?”