I ALWAYS WANTED TO FLY
Finally our local pair of crows
comes home to our trees and lawn
to scold small birds and cats, build
a nest and perch on the gutter
to sucker me into scattering crackers.
I need them to return each year,
want black sun to ripple on feathers
as they twist to watch me, not lose them
in wintry clouds of raucous flocks.
I cannot be a crow but sit for hours
on the porch, testing the faith of dreams
when I was a child, held one white
feather in my fist and ran into the wind.
Their fledgling waddles over the lawn,
each wing trying to fly on its own.
The parents, indifferent, preen or peck.
Alone now, the fledgling hunkers,
looks up, and spreads wings wide
for the first time since reeling down
from home, flapping upwards, higher
than nests, free of earth, not even
bewildered miracles can be so natural.
T. Alan Broughton has published four novels, a collection of short stories, and seven books of poetry, including A World Remembered (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 2010). He also has been the recipient of various grants, awards, and fellowships, including a Guggenheim Fellowship and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship.