Poem ‘Five Minutes’

Common rock pigeon (Columba livia)

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Five Minutes

It’s only a pigeon’s call,
three short squawks
repeated ad infinitum.
I wonder why
he has so much to say
but this is his life:
during the day he eats,
at dusk he turns to sleep

A car arrives— sounds like
the slick bass purr of a German V6,
crunching on gravel.
A door slamming marks an end,
maybe shopping unloaded:
the beginning of silence.
And then the pigeon
starts over all over again

poem © copyright df barker 2012


  1. LadyBlueRose's Thoughts Into Words · April 3, 2012

    I sat here and read this a couple time or more
    and realized with the slamming of a door, we could be the pieon
    living in 5 minute increments…always starting
    over again…

    I liked this one
    I just knew you had painted a picture of an empty bench with pigeons on the ground….that was what i saw…

    Tanks Dave…
    a thought provoking one today it seems



  2. LadyBlueRose's Thoughts Into Words · April 3, 2012

    and that would Thanks …I think I need another cup of coffee LOls


  3. Ina · April 3, 2012

    Hi David, what a wonderful thought over an ordinary moment 🙂


  4. dfb · April 3, 2012

    Thank you Maryrose! You are indeed very perceptive!


  5. dfb · April 3, 2012

    Thank you very much Ina!


  6. Russell Smith · April 3, 2012

    Very nice. I love all birds, even pigeons. They look so lovely when they are in flight. Great capture of a moment in time and universality of life. Or do I have it all wrong?


  7. dfb · April 3, 2012

    Thank you so much for your comments, Russell. You are quite right, my intention was to capture an essence of universality in a little ‘window’. 🙂


  8. claudia · April 3, 2012

    oh nice..what a great capture of the moment…and you know…i like both sounds…the V6 and the pigeon’s call…smiles


  9. dfb · April 3, 2012

    Thank you very much Claudia!


  10. Pete Armetta · April 3, 2012

    I’d rather be the pigeon. 🙂 I loved reading this, I can just picture it all. I wasn’t sure where you were going, but when you got there and circled back I cracked a big smile. hehh nice one!


  11. granbee · April 3, 2012

    I worked for several years as a legal secretary and legislative assistant in an office building in a city in Georgia where there were LOTS of pigeons on the ledges outside our office windows. They behaved exactly as you describe when a delivery truck would screech to a halt down on the street! I know pigeons make a lot of “dirt”, but I still love them, anyway, for all they have to say to me!


  12. dfb · April 3, 2012

    Pete, thank you very much!


  13. dfb · April 3, 2012

    Thank you for your comments Granbee – I like pigeons too!


  14. rangewriter · April 3, 2012

    Pigeons, the much maligned cousins of Mourning Doves (or is it Morning Doves). Glad your pigeons got a break from pigeon bashing.


  15. it reminds me of the messages we share in our poetry, we deliver, then there is quiet, many receive our songs, then go their way, and our moment of delivery comes allowing us to share our songs again! Your poem moves the mind and touches the soul!


  16. Victoria C. Slotto · April 3, 2012

    I so enjoy poetic observations that focus one sound. And I like pigeons, doves even more so, and they are busy here in the desert right now.


  17. tikarmavodicka · April 4, 2012

    I enjoyed this poem immensely. You created a reallynice contemplative feeling in your descriptions. Time almost seemed to be standing still.
    I don’t have many pigeons around of the European variety, but some live under the bridge in the park near me and I’m always amazed by the colouring and patterning of their feathers.
    Thank you for sharing such a lovely poem. It’s been a relaxing moment in my day.


  18. Three Well Beings · April 4, 2012

    This is a funny thing for me to share, David, but I took a photo of a pigeon today. Ha! I find them interesting, and I now see that you do, too! You captured their repetitive existence beautifully…Debra


  19. Soma Mukherjee · April 4, 2012

    Oh this is lovely…. i live in a high rise, its actually a huge residential complex of several high rises..used to be a small forest out here..now the pegions have made their nests in the building where ever they can..and I can tell you this( your poetry) is exactly the scenario here
    They do chirp a lot have lots to say …what a lovely poem David
    Have a wonderful week 🙂


  20. journeyintopoetry · April 4, 2012

    I love this one David!

    What a beautiful observation! And to capture it in words so eloquently too.



  21. dfb · April 4, 2012

    Thank you very much, Linda!


  22. dfb · April 4, 2012

    Wendell, you’re very kind and I appreciate your comments.


  23. dfb · April 4, 2012

    Victoria, I thank you very much – we have doves, too.


  24. dfb · April 4, 2012

    Hi, yes, they are far more attractive than people think, aren’t they? Thank you so much for commenting.


  25. dfb · April 4, 2012

    Debra, thank you so much! Yes, I think they are much maligned birds.


  26. dfb · April 4, 2012

    Thank you Soma, I always appreciate your comments – have nice week, too!


  27. dfb · April 4, 2012

    Christine, thank you so much! Hope you are well. We’ve got someone coming to visit us today, originally from Leeds (your part of the world); she was at Uni with my wife over thirty years ago, Sophia Jasieczek (spelling might be off), her parents were Polish refugees after the war. Amazingly (for these days) they have stayed in contact all this time.


  28. New View From Here · April 5, 2012

    “I wonder why
    he has so much to say
    but this is his life:
    during the day he eats,
    at dusk he turns to sleep”

    Boy, the layers to that are so many…how often can we identify with this pigeon, creatures of routine…


  29. dfb · April 5, 2012

    Once again, I am flattered by your comments and also very grateful.


  30. Betty Hayes Albright · April 5, 2012

    Nicely written, David – pigeons are smart, maybe he’s squawking out a poem! Enjoyed this very much. 🙂


  31. dfb · April 6, 2012

    Thank you very much Betty!


  32. bardessdmdenton · April 12, 2012

    But what a joy such repetition can be…especially in a world where nature is so often under threat of being changed forever. Enjoyed this!


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