Winter birds, circling,
cast long shadows swift
across a wind-swept field.
All on the ground is brown,
bitten down by winter wind,
except for sage grass clumps standing
too close to blow, too soft to break.
The topmost vulture
turns on a stationary wing,
hangs still in stiff wind,
looks down on kettling kin,
on three mockingbirds chasing
a red tail hawk trying to
follow the ramped air upward,
on an old man cleaning last summerís
garden of dead tomato vines.
A bright day, long shadows
weave over ground the human works
to clean; the wind drives scraps
tumbling across, catching against
composting piles of wood mulch,
against car tires, tomato stakes, legs.
The vulture twists, flips a wingtip
feather, kites on upward.
Broadside Series - Contents