Grackle on the grass,

surely you should not be the bird

to leap and peck so light-footedly

under a young plumeria tree

shaken lightly enough by the wind

to scatter petals

across morning freshness

in a circle of cool black shade


And yet we old men

passing through shadows

on our path of angst

know that when you fly

your tail feathers too

spread to show a flash of white

as we once did

before we knew memory