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Mary Taitt
Poet

 


Under tumbled black
Liquid pigeons pour through sky
Chased by peregrine.

I work in the city, and every day during my lunch hour I go for a walk. So I’ve sort of formed a bond with pigeons. Not because I feed them, but because I find them so beautiful.

Once I wrote a whole series of pigeon poems, and people actually got angry at me. They were angry because I was writing about something that seemed so trivial to them. But I find beauty in most everything, including pigeons.

After a while, I discovered there were peregrine falcons living on the tops of buildings, and they were eating the pigeons. So I actually saw a scene like the one that I wrote about. It was on this dark, ominous day. And it was thrilling to see it, especially under such exciting weather conditions.


Suddenly flowered
dresses everywhere. Hurray!
The snow has melted!

This is a scene I see every spring downtown. The first warm sunny day of spring, you suddenly see all these women out with dresses, and lots of times very beautiful spring dresses. They’re almost like flowers themselves, these beautiful women and girls, sprouting in the first light of spring.

It’s such a wonderful sign of spring when you see that happening. Spring fever. Everyone going out, soaking up the sun and being beautiful. You see legs for the first time! This I know because male friends are always point it out to me.

I had a friend who worked with me, and we’d go out to eat. He’d be so excited. He’d say, “Look! Legs! Legs!” It didn’t do anything for me, but I enjoyed his enjoyment, you know what I mean?


On storm—black waves, geese
bob and dive with the hunter's
abandoned decoys

Geese were very much a part of my life. After majoring in Wildlife Management, I worked as a naturalist at Beaver Lake. My husband, my children and I lived right on the lake and watched the geese migrate in and out in the spring and fall. I rehabilitated an abandoned baby goose.

I never hunted myself, except one time as a child. My brothers were really into bb guns and I shot at a bird and killed it. I was so upset that I never hunted again. But I’ve had friends, lovers and husbands who hunt. Eventually, I came to feel that hunting for food was OK. It didn’t mean I personally wanted to kill. At one time I wouldn’t kill a mosquito. But if I had to kill an animal to eat and live, I probably would.

 

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