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Conducting the Extinction Spasm.

Silvereyes have arrived--a November blitz, which is to apply an aggressive word to a co-ordinated, committed, but surely non-invasive activity. We've just not seen them before here where thornbills and weebills work food sources. But silvereyes are bolder and abrupt and bind together in a laser-like surveillance of all available. We're all adjusting to their glorious silvern input. Maybe prior to our five years here it was an annual journey--working in from the coast, arriving, doing the season, picking or stripping away the excess? Glorious? Orchardists--and there are a few small family concerns in the district--detest them. I recall such negativity from my days hanging around an Old Dalmatian orchardist at the foot of the Hills--silvereyes were the profanity he'd never otherwise utter, religious and alone in his shed. It rushes back. Tim photographs the flock and revels in their energy. And so do I, with out-of-place Hardyesque enthusiasm. The sun is harsh and making mirrors of unreflective surfaces. We see the silver of our own eyes, solar panels and radar dishes of an eagerness to receive, to watch this village on the move. Soon enough the makers of the extinction spasm will have these small birds--so common (if less common here)--in their grip. Then songs and chatter will be filed away, and in situ moments like these reduced to reminiscences, dragged up only to make a point about loss. Silvereyes re-sing all the vegetation we know. I think weebills and thornbills, still dizzy with the arrival, take notice, weigh the suggestions, but counter with what they know.

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Author:Kinsella, John (Australian poet)
Publication:West Branch
Article Type:Poem
Date:Sep 22, 2015
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