High Level


There is a mourning dove visiting


Have I mentioned that,

He or she?

It pushes its tail feathers through the

Padding I pushed in from the other side

Next to the

Baffles of the air-conditioner


In the afternoon, the bird is gone

I push the padding



In the morning, it returns

To push the foam strip through

With the tail again

I want to negotiate

The bird may stay, but I need

The air

It’s hotter than the season typically


And I write on my side

For now, it’s only us


I’m not sure what it’s doing, she or he,

Building a nest maybe

Mourning doves

Aren’t good at that,

Though I’m impressed with the

Chartres-like, circular

Labyrinth design

Of round, broken sticks

Arranged, frankly, more like a coaster

For my mug of coffee than

An avian home

For old or new


We’ll work something out

If not, winter finally will


Us both away


C L Couch


photo by Terry Johnson