Red Tailed Hawk, Louisiana

by clare e. potter

Trapped, I woke to my garden, looked out the window
for the hummingbird on the feeder, but beyond, in the ugly corner
on the wire fence, there you perched: a shock, your presence
in this concrete suburb and the garden I was afraid to go in.
Were you after that rat in the thick braids of grass
or waiting for the lizard-heavy leaves to bend?

I wasn’t sure what to pay attention to, your still deep gaze or
the way you swooped off, your wing breeze told on next door’s pear tree.

Later, a dove flew into our screen-door and he placed the dazed bird
into an old cage. As soon as it came back to itself with the wild eyes
of the newly trapped, it came to me, and I took to the road
and then, the sky.


Clare E. Potter is a bilingual Welsh poet and performer. For two years, she was one of the Hay Festival’s Writers at Work, the Landmark Trust’s poet-in-residence at Llwyn Celyn, and is currently directing her first documentary. She studied an MA in Afro-Caribbean literature at the University of Southern Mississippi, collaborates with musicians and artists and is completing her second poetry collection, A Certain Darkness.