Almanac Poetry: ‘Blue Wren’ – Tommy Mallet




Work day done,
I step out of the ute and just stand around for a while,
wearing the Milky Way.
Everything’s quiet near midnight, about
-5 degrees.


It’s too late for a fire,
I’m too tired,
yet approaching home I notice
I’ve left the door open again,
inside’s as cold as out.


A bad movie is still looping on my computer,
just for noise.


I set about done things:
feeding the dog, making dinner,
plugging in the other computer
to write.


A sharp, loud sound disturbs
20 years of routine.
It’s beautiful.


Something’s in here, but I’m hungry,
so ignore it for now.


Soon, a brief song breaks out.
There’s movement in the corner,
from under the seat.


A small, trapped Blue-Wren appears,
then hides again.
The sings again.


That sound…
unadulterated by work,
or motion of wind and trees and air that breathes…
is unbelievably loud for something
so small,


is so precise,




The Blue-Wren appears again, even though it knows I’m watching.
Then hides and sings.
There’s no two ways –
It’s letting me know,
calling for help.


I turn on the outside light,
open the door wide,
herding it this way and that
until it and its wonderful voice are gone.


Shutting the door, I notice I’ve left my work boots on.
muddy footprints cover everything,
a dance sheet of sorts.


Steps 1, 2, 3 of A Bird’s Song.



Tommy Mallet



More from Tommy Mallet HERE



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  1. Colin Ritchie says

    Love blue wrens! Before we downsized into town from our 10 acre block we loved the array of birds, particularly native birds we saw and heard around our property. As we had floor to ceiling windows the blue wrens would forever be tapping on them in response to their reflection, loved watching them. Unfortunately since we have been in town I have not seen a blue wren!

  2. Nice, Tommy. Love the drawing, too.

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