Monday, May 31, 2021

Nest of the Screech-Owl

I had to abandon this blog for a while due to some disruptions in my professional life, but the paperwork is signed and the deal is done, so I am hoping to be able to spend more time reading poetry from Clark Ashton Smith (CAS)!

This haiku from CAS was unpublished in his lifetime, and is not available on The Eldritch Dark, so here's the complete text:

When I groped eagerly
In the hollow tree,
The screech-owl nipped my hand.

This is a simple poem from CAS, presumably referring to the western screech owl (Megascops kennicottii) which is native to the Pacific coastal regions of North America.  Despite its brevity, the direct evocation and cause and effect has a pleasing immediacy.

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