You are dark brown
almost black like me.
the color of the red earth
I come from.
Scientists call you Harris’s Hawks,
but I know you
as dusky angels
perched in my Ponderosa Pines.
Nene, Chiquito and Briana
my Chihuahua, Jack Russell
and Tortoise shell Tabby
all know you’re here.
They smell your wildness.
They feel your gaze.
They do not run away.
Early morning walkers on Tumamoc
witness the thwack thwack
of powerful wings and
behold your glide through sweet
Little children in the wash behind my house
watch you chase your friends
through Palo Verde and Mesquite
thick with creamy pods and mistletoe.
Small mice confused scurry along moist sand.
Pack rats tremble in the brush.
Rabbits freeze, pretend to be invisible.
Mourning doves do not coo.
All understand balance and
the desert is thankful you are here.
In the early morning shadows,
I see you in the trees.
I know you hear Aurora’s music and
M.E. Wakamatsu was born in the border town of San Luis R.C. Sonora, Mexico. The daughter of a Mexican mother and Japanese father, she writes from the border between cultures, between patterns of discourse, between first and third worlds…