Poem – Ballet Over The Border (By Donal Mahoney)


Every summer they come, a ballet

over the border, without papers,

a mass migration of


ruby-throat hummers,

beautiful birds that devour

millions of flies in North America,


birds we welcome because we love

their beauty and their ballet.

We do everything to help them,


hanging and cleaning feeders of nectar

to plump them up so they can feast

on flies until October when


they have to lead the young

over the border in another ballet

to Mexico or the Caribbean.


All winter we shovel snow

and wait for the hummers to

begin their long flight back


to arrive in time for summer.

They arrive again without papers.

There are no plans to deport them.


Author Bio:

Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, Missouri. He has had fiction and poetry published in various publications in the U.S. and elsewhere. Among them are The Galway Review (Ireland), The Recusant (England), The Missing Slate (Pakistan), Guwahatian Magazine (india), Bluepepper (Australia), The Osprey Journal (Wales), Public Republic (Bulgaria), and The Istanbul Literary Review (Turkey). Some of his earliest work can be found at and some of his newer work at