At my age
one becomes a bird.

The doctor is grave about my bones,
so empty
that a narrow light shines through. Yet
bird bones
are nothing
but white clouds and ideas.

The doctor frets about my mind.
On stick legs
I wander the parking lot
forgetting the names of things. But
things with their heavy shadows
are the opposite of flight.

My sadness upsets the doctor.
There are medications
to prevent the complications
of staring at the sky. Still
sadness is nostalgia
for a place one’s never been.

I have hunkered at the hearth
stirred the soup,
whimpered in the dark,
then spread my arms
toward the soft heat of human touch.

My wings are forming.
You can see it
in the trembling of my hands.
I will lose my love
of the ground.

[From Confrontation 117]

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