Black Owl

We walked back that evening
My brother and me
Moonlit, along a thin tarmacked strip
A shadowed road, barely wider than
My outstretched arms
Or two paces in my muddied boots
High walls these; hedges atop walls
A compost of dead flowers atop hedges
A jumbling of flowering brambles
And the jazzy funnels of bindweed
But barely wide enough
To let in the briny air
Funneling through from the distant
Headland’s breach;
Barely wide enough
For the outstretched wings of the owl
That dropped down on us from above
Thinking my hat a leaping vole?
Or my brother’s nose a tasty mouse?
But it dropped in front of us all the same
Then opened up its broad wings wide
Speeding away from us, down the road
An unmarked police car
Pursuing the crook
In a doppler-effect of portent silence
Before returning to the distant shadows
Around a crook in the road

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