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Wheatfield with Crows – Vincent van Gogh

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Night Herons

Some herons
were fishing
in the robes
of the night

at a low hour
of the water’s body
and the fish, I suppose,
were full

of fish happiness
in those transparent inches
even as, over and over,
the beaks jacked down

and the narrow
bodies were lifted
with every
quick sally,

and that was the end of them
as far as we know—
though, what do we know
except that death

is so everywhere and so entire—
pummeling and felling
or sometimes,
like this, appearing

through such a thin door—
one stab, and you’re through!
And what then?
Why, then it was almost morning,

and one by one
the birds
opened their wings
and flew.

— Mary Oliver