Kestrel2So much of nature is driven by instinct, and no more apparent is this than in species that prey on other species. An ocelot, for example, will hunt in the rainforest for mice, agoutis, monkeys, opossums, armadillos, anteaters, snakes or turtles. But it may also fall victim to a larger predator, a jaguar for example. In one way or another all life feeds on life: organic creatures require organic sustenance! It is a fascinating sight to see a kestrel hovering in the air as it fixes its gaze on a rodent down below, only to plummet seconds later to make the kill.

Instinct, however, is not to be confused with human passion, the passion that can lead to love at first sight (or vice-versa), that can lead to an all-consuming hunger that may override good sense and ignore any social or financial considerations as it homes in on the object of its desire.


The single kestrel
                   that hangs in the air
enthrals the eye
                   the sheer beauty
of it plumage
                   the pin-point accuracy
of its eye
                   the effortless power
in its talons
                   as it seizes its prey
in one fell swoop

Is love
                   any less dead eye
any less ferocious
                   in clinging on
to the object of affection
                   the warm flesh
of the beloved ?

Did Orpheus not descend
                   into the very mouth
of hell
                   to retrieve her ?
Immaculate love
                   wipes the slate
kick-starts a new millennium
                   a re-enactment
of first things
                   first kiss first taste
first immersion
                   in the warm
beating blood and fibre
                   of another

John Lyons