Today's poem is by Anna Ross

Winter Feeding
        —Celestún, Yucatan Peninsula

Our fishing-turned-tour boat stalls
and swerves toward the flamingos, hundreds

of heads lost in deliberate tilt and scoop,
each reed leg lifting, holding, falling

like calipers disrupted.
You translate for me as our guide explains

how the miniature pink shrimp of this lagoon
lend their color to the wintering flocks,

and we spot newcomers, whose day-old blush
will weekly spiral down each sloping neck

to their blunt bodies constantly disassembling
into flight. In the spring, each pair will deposit

a moon-white egg in the mud
beneath the mesh of trees along shore.

Always there is a before.
Would you name this ours?

There among the mangroves — roots knuckling
down to us, alive in either salt water or sweet.

And behind us the honking of those impossible birds
as we floated out on the inevitable current.

Copyright © 2014 Anna Ross All rights reserved
from If a Storm
Anhinga Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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