Copyright © 2001 Bob Dornberg
SongbirdEven though I have not seen it,
I know how it could be,
how when the skylark flees
from a falcon's quick pursuit,
it will turn sometimes and begin
to sing, as if to say, "Being
eaten by a falcon is the last thing
in the world I'm worried about.
You cannot catch me, Tra la la.
I've got breath enough to waste
on a song like this, which you
may as well enjoy before I vanish
into air." And the raptor knows
it's true, knows that anyone
foolish enough to sing in such
a circumstance is quite beyond
ever being caught, and that for all
his hunger he'll be given just
a song, tumbling through the air,
as the body he desires disappears.
Copyright © 1987 the Modern Poetry Association.
Reprinted by permission of the Editor of Poetry and the author.
John Brehm's poems have appeared in Poetry, The Southern Review, The Gettysburg Review, Best American Poetry 1999, and other journals. He is a freelance writer living in Brooklyn.