Neither the souped-up posturing hummingbirds
looping down to within a foot of her head,
nor the jabbering charm of goldfinches
lodging complaints in the tree’s crown
know the recipe for making her skedaddle.
Even the bipedal primates gaping from below
don’t rate more than the quick looksee
she fires at them from about midway up
the contested tree. Who wouldn’t want
the weight of her talons landing on a sleeve
padded with leather and impregnated
with a scent birds of prey can’t resist?
Just picturing how that would feel
elevates a chin, shoulders and spinal cord
pretzeled into urban acquiescence.
But already she’s booked off for a nap,
gone back to whatever barred owls dream
before light rheostats down to nothing
and those sound-misering wings commit
to the patter of vole paws in jewelweed.