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Revised Free Verse Poem: “Chimney Swifts”

Chimney Swifts

It was this same time: an early winter.
Columns of black birds undulated
across the paling sky at evening,
soundless. I’m grown. Where I live now, the cold
will bring snow. But there, then, it meant only
less light, moderate cold, damp sadness, robbed
of lucidity, framed in magnolia,
yella pine, and papery blades of grass.

I know now that you had spent that whole day
packing, pacing, retreating upstairs to
your round brass ashtray: like a whispering
bowl, a quarry of crumbling granite, and
filters turned the color of weak sun-tea.

I can see the jet-black, perennial
birds, not perched like others, but clinging on
tightly to red brick, any horizontal
surface, like a magic trick, or a child
in a new place, pleading to be picked up.

Original post by Whitney