I just returned from a trip to Arkansas and saw a couple magnificent eagles perched in trees by water. They move south as the freezing line drops so they can have access to open waterways for fishing.
I keep trying to get the right touch of eagle-energy in a poem. This was one of my early attempts, from about 1980, when they were so rare we drove out toward Lecompton to find them:
Pilgrimage of Eagles
I dream of eagles winging over the river
and know northern waters are frozen shut.
The same band of eagles returns
to cottonwoods on the Kaw.
They forgive us our cities and persist,
following open waters just past the edge of ice.
Each year we journey up
to watch them circle clouds like Gods,
drop, and take fish.
They silence the children.
When snow arrives from the northlands
they appear and enter our dreams.
We sense them for miles away
like geese flying over at --
voices calling from just beyond conversation.
Eagles bring sleet, a curtain of darkness:
the long season of what remains
after wind strips away familiar summer.
We learn to listen for them in the dark,
within the quietest moments of sleep.c. Denise Low