Buzzard womanb2ap3_thumbnail_November-2014-305.JPG
scouring the earth.
Scavenging,
uncovering,
digging up,
clawing away.

She picks the meat
from your bones,
she drops the scales
from your eyes,
she cleans out
your shell.

Digesting
,
transforming
all that has passed away
into something new.
Clearing away the dead
making way for rebirth.

Listen to her
.
She says
waste nothing.

When the wheel of the year turns towards fall, I always feel the call to retreat, to cocoon, to pull away. I also feel the urge for fall de-cluttering---my eyes laser around the house for things to unload, get rid of, to cast away. I also search my calendar for those things which can be eliminated, trimmed down, cut back on. I think it is the inexorable approach of the winter holiday season that prompts this desire to withdraw, as well as the natural rhythm of the earth which so clearly says: let things go, it is almost time to hibernate.

Late autumn and the shift toward winter is a time of discernment. A time to choose. A time to notice that which has not made it through the summer’s heat and thus needs to be pruned away. In this time of the year, we both recognize the harvest of our labors and that which needs to be released or even sacrificed as we sense the promise of the new year to come.

--
Buzzard Woman is part of my “womanprayer” series of poems, excerpted from my book of earth-based poetry: Earthprayer, Birthprayer, Lifeprayer, Womanprayer. I wrote this poem in my car (thanks to the voice memo feature on my iphone) as I watched vultures wheel their way through the sky as I drove to work.