To move, be moved by whim or design,
lilting, dipping on breezes, an invisible kite
shimmying, weightless in suspension,
a take off that is meant to fast ascend
like a creature of air, earthly or otherwise.
Any flight, any wings, lifting til gone.
I once so yearned for it, true freedom.
Plotting release from gravity,
shedding this tinsel thin flesh,
taking on feathers or silver scales,
then starting that vertical trip through
gale, fire or ice, into brave mercurial space.
Farthest away from this place of blood,
pain a clinging cape, and more
betrayals slinking by, misshapen things.
Yet my spirit found no passage for a final portal;
strength grew in place of bitter longings.
Where would wings have taken me safely?
What power would have redeemed all
unforgiven and unforgiving
and fill the cave of my heart?
Not one thing that is temporal.
Only deeper springs at bottom of the well.
I am older, know how to remember the good.
To take a bountiful day, all the Giver gives.
I was made futile by my youth but
live on, corralled by autumn’s
offerings: leaves innocent and vivid
while giving their last on earth;
this painterly stalk and branch
separating an afternoon sky;
happy howl and bark of dog; cluck of hen;
jazzy skitter of cat paws and tail;
bombast of notations from the crows.
Trees sing easy to one another and me
as I pass with a limp and nod.
My hope throbbing, a wild drum in my chest-
glory of joy careening in maze of veins:
bless and take every, any, all
this life this life this life