A Confederacy of Flight

Maybe it’s middle age,

all the talk of joints

and life insurance, but

my envy has shifted

from the lovely

polished humans-

whatever it was that

once looked like success,

that tenuous beauty-

to the preposterous

hornbill, the beige

and ruffled mousebird,

all those flying things

with their sharp purpose,

those magnificent wings.

I dream of decomposing,

feeding my tired skin to

an earthworm, just

for the final hope of being

swallowed by a bird,

of joining the swooping

confederacy, the hope

of all that air

lifting me.

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