Meditation on birds near nightfall
Near last light, no sounds but the breeze
through leaves in the sycamores.
Above, there's a sudden curve of birds -
crows - dark against the blue white
sky. As they pass, their wings slip through
air - the sound of skin brushing skin.
Five, now six, heavy vultures rise
upon thermals edging a spring front.
A few falcons, smaller, glide among them.
They're different. Stream-lined.
The quick angle of wing. Slendered bodies
that thin down to tails fanned open
to catch the current. They follow the warm,
circling on flows, while down here, evening
cool is coming. It's a final call from winter,
miles north now, that grows and spirals through
dark saying listen, until light's too little
to see. Settled, even the songbirds fall silent.
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