Where Plovers Once Did Dwell
On sandy shore where once did dwell
an acrobat of fancy flight,
Who by fake and feint would e'er escape
all threats of greater might.
Who danced amongst the sea foam tops,
with feathered plumage fair,
Whose agile wings of matchless grace
were hers beyond compare...
The piping of this little bird
'twas a Siren's song to mate,
To beckon-not two or three-just one,
a call to recreate.
No more, no more on shell-strewn shore
does our Plover perch or stand,
Too late, too late, for progress now
has gained its upper hand.
We ponder oft those times long-past
with Nature full in bloom,
For too high a cost, the last one's lost-
a darker forecast looms.
Only time will tell the price we pay
for progress, you and me:
Tho' we strive in vain, 'tis not our gain
to dwell apart from thee.
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This Poems Story
This poem's author, James Thompson, is an attorney in the old sea port town of Morehead City, NC. An avid coastal fisherman and saltwater enthusiast, he especially enjoys the Cape Lookout National Seashore where he frequently visits for surf fishing excursions. This remote area, also known as the Outer Banks of North Carolina, is strewn with the bones of ancient shipwrecks of long ago and hosts the diminutive "piping plover" as it begins its annual nesting season in April. This quaint, little shorebird is designated as a threatened species by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, and its habitat is thus fiercely protected by the park service. While at the Banks, the author frequently comes upon this bullet with feathers and was moved to pen these little phrases in hopes that at least a few readers might come to a keener appreciation of the plight of such endangered creatures.