Chickens settle in the barn
while the grass is tinged with gold,
but the guineas
keep their beaks to the grass.
Earth rolls up,
sun disappears
and the cloudless sky turns a warm pink.
It’s almost dark
when the guineas,
still bug-hunting out in the treeline
let me approach without them scattering
in three directions,
and slowly
in a huddle
let me herd them to the barn,
each taking one last look about—
causing me to hold my breath,
lest they change their minds—
before entering the door.
Mockingbird seems reluctant
to give up the day too.
With last light
it broadcasts one final flurry
of song
from atop the cedar tree.