In last Tuesday's post ('when the eyes blur') I was too lazy to hunt down the poem with a mockingbird in it. Here it is--I fling, it's flung, we flang.
With the mockingbird running through his repertoire
And the morning still chilled like the last cans of beer
From yesterday’s barbecue bobbing in the cooler,
I tell Cheryl (my long dead friend of whom I have sung
But never written), “My minutes are mine, but my days
Are Death’s.” Because it’s true.
It’s a chipping sparrow just now from the mockingbird
On the roof, quite proud, you can tell, of himself.
My pajamas are thin and my legs are goose-fleshed.
From the chill but also because my minutes are plunging
Irretrievably into the day, drowning, sending solitary
Sad bubbles up from the muddy depths of Lost Time.
“Cheryl, can you flick those little pennies back through?
I would like to roll them.”
The robin in the yard is nonplussed—where is her mate
Calling from, what could he want?
I scold the mockingbird and immediately relish the phrase--
“Scolding the Mockingbird.” I imagine my posterity
As a temple full of proverbs and this one warns against
Futility. And if by posterity I mean what cans still float
In the cooler after a well-thrown barbecue, then, “Cheryl
These minutes are mine.” But if I mean a temple of proverbs,
“Cheryl, my days are Death’s and soon I am yours.”
The filcher postures a warbler. I usually don’t drink
In my pajamas, but the beer is still cold—