swift silent still

barred owl
silent,
swift, then suddenly still.
an angel of death,
beautiful and terrible,
merciful and cruel

I notice the silence, the stillness fall over me before I see the flash of white wings: a barred owl. She swoops into our locust tree, watches, listens and waits.

Blue jays come looking for food, full of bravado, talking loudly to ward off their fear. But it works, breaking her concentration, and she turns her head quickly to follow their commotion. Distracted, she moves away.