red-wing blackbird 

i want to be wildlife
which is not the same
as wanting to live a wild life.
i kind of already have that.
no, i want to grow like kudzu
& reeds & ivy. kissing every neck
that wants me. we go on
a nature walk. i see us
as two birds. talking grass all around.
your long legs in the marsh water.
my feet gripping tall reeds.
nearby, across an overpass
cars rush towards the water
as if they intend to plunge in.
i picture a road that leads
right to the water. we try to
identify the birds. argue over
whether the one above us
is plover or a tern. agree that
you are the egret & i am the red knot.
on the way back i want to know then
who is the red-wing blackbird.
he followed up, calling & asking
“why so soon?” which i thought meant
“why are you leaving so soon”
but really it could be anything.
i guess i am a pretty soon person.
birds know more about us than
our brothers. you preen yourself
in the car mirror. i want to ask you if
you want to follow the cars
& drive past the neon hotels &
into the ocean. i know i can be drastic.
this is not a poem with answers.
i wish i was the red-wing blackbird
i really do but he is gone now
& so are we. i think
i’m going to tell you how i want
to grow unbroken & untamed
which is funny because we were just
on a nature walk which is
both broken & tamed. but not
the red-wing blackbird.
he laughed at us.

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