A CRASH OF WHITE
I look out into the darkness one way and my colleague looks out the other, watching for poachers, drawn by the heat of their desire, the siren horn of this northern white rhino. He has no idea he is a male endling, a juddering line to charge into a crash of white. He eats last meals with arthritic grace, no performance just final acts for watchtowers, fences. Drones zip overhead, mutated mosquitos, a signal sobs from the keratin embedded transmitter, just one more thing done to him, from capture to the circus to conservation, he has been denuded of all agency. His grunts could be his kind’s sweetest song and we’ll have nothing to compare it to, as Masked Weavers fly and leave their hymns to float down to our ears through the morning, his croon directly to the dust. Tomorrow breaks in to become today and he is on his feet for it, that thick hide, boulder in sunlight, shivering between being strong for another verse or surrendering to the coda of the Kenyan soil.
Manatees and Vanities
they have a happy consumption and we feed it, more perhaps than nature ever did, pleasure bloats; the taste of brine, and sheen of crushed scales, the spitting out of tangled bones in mangled shapes skin that would not tear, a weight that charmed the sea.
Cryptic Woodwhites on the Carrickblacker Road
They make a music that only they hear, invisible fiddles keen, their limbs the bows, nature accompanies and orchestrates and scalps no tickets for the show. Their opalescent shapes cast shadows on nettles, love does not settle the nerves, it sets off antennae, thin vanguards that scout ahead, harvesting enough risk to feel and fill instinct, if your heart and body is fragile enough a breeze carries all the impact of a storm, so finish what you start, tear the veil if asked, task the limits of your many winged form.
Glen Wilson is a multi-award winning Poet from Portadown. He won the Seamus Heaney Award for New Writing in 2017, the Jonathan Swift Creative Writing Award in 2018 and The Trim Poetry competition in 2019. His poetry collection An Experience on the Tongue is out now with Doire Press.