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One-Sided Conversation
Glen Sorestad


A lone waxwing, perched on an upper arm
of the small green ash. I stop. Drab grey
is usually uninviting, but early sun-slants†
enliven even the muted slate tones.
A jaunty blue jay arrives, picks a seat
on the same ash, a few feet from the other
and begins to prattle, as jays are wont to do,†
with neither provocation nor invitation.

Whatever the jay may ask or demand,
the waxwing remains mum, while the jay
flits, branch to branch, seeking, interrogating,
but receiving not a shred of revelation.

Frustrated by its companionís reluctance†
to disclose a single morsel of useful news,
the jay utters a few rude squawks and flaps off
in search of a more receptive audience.

© by Glen Sorestad.
Used with the authorís permission.

Glen Sorestad is a Canadian poet, fiction writer, editor, publisher, anthologist, and public speaker. Author of more than twenty books of poetry and numerous short stories, his work has appeared in more than sixty anthologies and textbooks. Glen served from 2000-2004 as Saskatchewan’s first Poet Laureate and has given public readings of his poetry in every province of Canada, as well as in the U.S. and many parts of Europe. He lives in Saskatoon with his wife, Sonia, who he claims is his "first and most enthusiastic reader and editor." Learn more about Glen here.




Post New Comment:
Waxwings are among my favorite birds. I'd never describe them as gray, but a beige, or grieve, with tipped tail and accents. The poem proves the wisdom of keeping one's mouth shut! I e njoyed it.
Posted 05/25/2020 01:57 PM
I know people who flit about seeking something to talk about--after they embellish, of course. Excellent, delightful poem.
Posted 05/24/2020 06:55 PM
Lori Levy:
Definitely like some people I know!
Posted 05/23/2020 06:49 PM
Am I the waxwing or the jay?
Posted 05/23/2020 09:18 AM
michael escoubas:
I like all the "shuns" in this poem Glen: "provocation," "invitation," "revelation,"--which seems to have been the waxwing's relational strategy!--Nicely done.
Posted 05/23/2020 08:46 AM
Nothing worse than a silent companion I would have flapped away too. . Great description.
Posted 05/23/2020 07:32 AM
Larry Schug:
A nicely portrayed scene, Glen. It's a joy of spring watching as the winter migrants return. The blue jays, who stick around all winter seem to think they're in charge.
Posted 05/23/2020 06:21 AM
I?m there flying away from the waxwing.
Posted 05/23/2020 05:48 AM

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