Coyote Mercury

words, birds and whatever else by James Brush

The Great Egret

I ask the egret what makes him great. He smiles his bird smile and tells me of forbidden passion and how he loved and lost a snowy egret once. Held great roosts on the other side of the pond, invited all the shorebirds, hoping—just hoping—she’d maybe wade up his shore. At night he stood one-legged in a tree, ignoring the herons all around, while he studied the faint light reflected in the rippling water across the pond—I stop him there, tell him it sounds like he’s cribbing this story from Fitzgerald.  Yes, he says, returning to the present, it’s true, it’s true, but there is no copyright for the heart, and besides… she was so beautiful and it was spring and the stars were bright and we were fledglings in the days of love.

egret reflections
ripple the still pond
echoes fade


  1. had to look up haibun. I think I could like the form.
    You got to love a bird that steals from a good stylist.

    • Thanks, barbara, glad you liked it. I haven’t written many haibun, but I always enjoy when I do. Perhaps, I’ll do more before the month is out.

  2. A comic haibun! Love it.

  3. James,
    I also had to look up hailbun. Very interesting. I love your poem.

  4. …”there is no copyright for the heart” – I love that line! I like that the bird is telling the story. I’m with the others, I had to look up haibun, too. Interesting form, and I like that it’s in the present tense.

    By the way, I would have been disappointed if my “la fleur” post over on HOTH didn’t make you think of LOST…;)

    • Thanks, Heather. I originally wrote it in past tense and then changed it right before I posted it. I’m glad to hear that worked.

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