Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Balance of nature

This October week
only the glare
of malignant yellow eyes
show where
a grizzled grey
tiger tom cat
well-used to winning
territorial battles
cowers under
a low juniper branch
in his own front yard
hiding from
a swaggering
cocky flock
of cedar waxwings
reeling drunk
on fermented
bright orange berries
strewn in fallen mounds
the mountain ash tree.


Anonymous said...

I remember the robins staggering around in our backyard when I was a child. They'd get drunk on the fermenting crab apples on the ground. Then the neighborhood cats would stalk them for a quick meal...and some of the birds seemed too drunk to fly, so they got eaten. I wonder if the cats got drunk then?
I also read recently that tests done (can't remember which city) on dead birds revealed they didn't have avian flu, but were just drunk, and kept smacking into office building windows and killing themselves...

coyote said...

I read that, too, Nonny. It seems that birds are no smarter than other creatures when it comes to binge drinking.

What I can say about waxwings is that when knee-crawling drunk, they seemed to watch each other's backs.

Sober, they just darted away. But if Sam-o tried to creep out of his lurkage during one of these autumnal bacchanals, they'd swarm him like an outlaw motorcycle gang with a grudge. They were a force to be reckoned with -- and that tough old cat lived in mortal fear every fall.

Anonymous said...

More power to the birds!