Tag Archives: birds

Waiting Room

I am not impatient this time
waiting for my turn
to lay back in the chair and open wide—
there are children whispering loudly
and bells dangling from the door
announcing everyone’s exit and entry
but it all goes on without me
like the volume is turned way down
on just another reality TV show—
I am lost in yesterday.
I am full of the heat that followed us
into the woods and I can only hear
the song of the warblers,
those black and white ones
who provided our sound track
as we kissed on the fallen hickory—
and after I am rattled into alertness
by the sound of my name
I’ve got nothing to do for 15 minutes
but close my eyes
and let both my hands rest on my belly
while I consider where you’ve touched me—
and I don’t even need five fingers to count
the number of times we’ve made love
but in this noisy and populated darkness
I am alone with your body
and we are filling up our hands.









No one thinks
to themselves
how awful
when these creatures
fly at each other
with violence
in their wings—
with slender beaks
nipping snipping
fighting for the nectar
of the honeysuckle
and columbine—
we accept that survival
is a good excuse
to be greedy,
and because
they are beautiful
in their
metallic green dress
and wine colored collar
we forgive them
for things we humans
could never
get away with—
especially females
who aren’t looking
for a long term
but want to be
impressed into bed
for just one night
of spectacular sex
with the partner
of her choice
without feeling guilty
or worried about
the violent judgment
of the righteous—
who most likely
have imagined
what it would be like
to be that audacious
and that brave.







You are
the little bird
with your wings
spread in a modest
and tentative display
singing a song
so quiet
the others don’t
get close enough
to appreciate
your splendor—

I am
the little bird
who flew in closer
to admire
the way the light
illuminates the color
in your wings
and I can hear
that the song you
started singing today
is just for me.






For Her

You were in the right place
at the right time
and offered him a sweetness
which he accepted cautiously
and optimistically—
and now, years later, you have him
all to yourself on the trails
and on the water, and even
in the air when you travel to
California or Costa Rica—
and you get to study his mouth
when he says words like bloodroot
and loosestrife and chokecherry—
and you get to see his joy
when the brown thrasher
keeps singing even when summer
has come to its end—
you have a bird’s eye view
of his mission and his passion
and you are allowed to curl up
beside him in the nest of his bed—
but I envy nothing about you
except your proximity to him—
to a creature neither one of us
will ever possess—
and when he wants to fly away
(he will need to fly away)
I hope you’ll kiss him goodbye,
softly, and let him go.




All I Need to Know

Your shirt said
and I wanted to do what it said
to find out what you’d do
once you got there—
if you’d invite me to stay
or thank me for dropping you off.
I know how much you love
the water – the way it
can’t be contained—
the way you like to move
in its direction whenever possible
on your lime green Kayak, alone—
which is all I need to know
to make a guess that
I’d be left standing on the shore
like a curious sort of bird,
watching you drift away from me
as I drown in the absence
of your love.




It never happened.
We never walked together
through the woods
on our favorite seasons.

His broad, sturdy hands
never brushed mine
in the quiet exchange
of a purple wildflower.

I never watched
as he rescued a small robin—
lifting it gingerly
toward the cupped palm
of dried mud and twigs.

He never took my hand
to help me cross the creek
over a fallen tree
as he steadied himself
on small islands of stone.

I never caught him
watching me with curiosity
out of the corner of my eye
as I gazed upward through the trees.

We never got caught in the rain
a mile off the trail, at dusk,
or found an abandoned shelter
without windows or a door
which we could safely lock.

We never acted like modest children
wringing out our clothes,
and he never asked
if I was warm enough.

I never told him that I wasn’t.



DeMaris Gaunt