Wild Geese at dusk

They are back. I heard them this evening at dusk in the paddock. And they did for me what they have done for others, capturing me, lifting me above the clamour of our short-sighted world. I am familiar with the poems by Wendell Berry and Mary Oliver, but many years ago I fell for the poetry of Patrick Kavanagh and his words unwind themselves in my head whenever I hear the wild geese.

Beyond the Headlines

Then I saw the wild geese flying

In fair formation to their bases in Inchicore

And I knew that these wings would outwear the wings of war

And a man’s simple thoughts outlive the day’s loud lying.

Don’t fear, don’t fear, I said to my soul.

The Bedlam of Time is an empty bucket rattled,

‘Tis you who will say in the end who best battled.

Only they who fly home to God have flown at all.

Patrick Kavanagh, Collected Poems



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6 responses to “Wild Geese at dusk

  1. We have many of them flying over right now. There are several ponds in our neighborhood so right at dusk they often circle and decide if they want to stop or fly on to the big lake nearby. I love hearing them and always stop and look to see if I can spot them. We have many huge trees so sometimes I hear them but they are not in sight. When I’m lucky they go right overhead.

    Wendell Berry’s poem is my favorite. It’s like a sacred song to me.

  2. June

    Thanks – I love that poem! I’m going to look up more by him.

    Last year I realized I’d never seen Wild Geese That Fly With The Moon On Their Wings, and then one evening, soon after, an obliging little flock flew past in front of the moon and let me see that very thing!

  3. Cjay

    We have geese everywhere where I live. If you go down to the river it’s just geese as far as you can see!

    You’ve one an award over at my blog! http://artemisareia.blogspot.com