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Morning sunlight reflecting
off frosty dried prairie grasses
sent a gauzy cast
across the swell on the horizon.

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The white breasts
of three Red-tailed Hawks
shown in the sunshine
as they perched facing east
in the trees along Doe Creek.
Soon the sparkling grasses
would dry, the spell
a moment’s mystical memory.

On the way back to the house,
I stepped quietly
into the round-topped barn,
just in case.
Recently, I had discovered
how Barn Owl’s feathers blend
with the color of the barn’s rafters.
Now, I knew better how to spot
Owl. But it was not camouflaged
this morning. Right there in a corner,
it stood. I swallowed my delight,
watched, moved closer,
slowly. I couldn’t tell if the slits of black
were closed or open. It never blinked,
never moved. I don’t know
if it was asleep
or if it was giving me permission
to stare into its heart-shaped face.

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