Poetry: The Rage of the Barred Owl

by Ellen E. Taylor

When Moon unmasks your naked face

And gilds your gun with diamonds green

I mark your progress from afar.

You stumble toward my roosting place,

Studying your tiny screen,

Tracking  an  artificial star.


You killed my wife some dawns ago,

Fooled by your telescopic sight:

She was a Northern Spotted Owl!

You threw her feathers in the snow

No measurements of  weight or height:

Bars or spots, murder most foul!


Management stalks through the trees

Plying the Endangered Species Act

And shifting its dynamic core.

We will be gone when, by degrees

The  soil will  sicken, parched and cracked:

Then fire, desert, nothing  more.


I, Owl, now curse your species’ birth:

No Permit comes from Mother Earth.