The starlings, unfolding and rippling,
a heavy quilt held by two people, one
on each end to shake the sand free.
Could our traffic look beautiful
from the height of flying birds,
a red flush of brake lights in rain.
A bird can’t be so desperate as we
are to let the obstinate land please
us. There is a place you return to,
hoping to be fed, a lake, a hill,
a split rock or shore. There is a
mountain to stare up at, made up
of each mountain you have seen,
each day you lived without rocks
hoisted up in the sky. The mountain
accumulates, borrows dirt and rock
and bird, borrows ocean and riverbed,
will borrow you if you keep looking.