Some of them grew legs, long and thin,
stilts to walk the marshes,
the ornithologist smiled to acknowledge,
hid in his den of leaves, branches,
to watch water birds through binoculars,
nourished by coffee, sandwiches,
content to be far from city crowds, traffic jammed motorways,
felt he had found the best way to spend unmarked days.
Everyone likes birds, he thought,
but he was one of the few who liked to study them.
A flight of geese, honking high in the air,
he loved to watch until once more
the sky was silent.
The ornithologist, home from the marshes,
looked through his bird books
to find the name of a rare one
his eyes had brightened to see,
between blinks, piping in water, through reeds,
and then it was gone.