In the city of concrete birds,
shoulders lately blessed by a lover's face
--an egg on her tongue, feathers in corona around her eyes--
bear risk as heavy as Sisyphus' tears.
In Paris, the paradise of concrete birds,
tablets are struck from the hands of poets in cafes.
Hats must be sturdy,
utility workers must brim in stadiums,
Every morning, I leave you without leaving.
I wear a dress of twigs and string,
perpetuating the world;
my bones double helixed
from Billie Holiday records and plaster,
I am a nest for concrete birds.
We must be careful, as we promenade.
The Luftwaffe are old leaves blowing,
but when we think of each other,
what to say,
how much to lie,
which tender sensibilities to spare,
Waiters in doorways open their lips to birth air raid sirens.
The concrete birds select our skulls,
without pity or malice
landing in our destruction like swans in summer,
at home there,
symbols of love lifted by our obliteration.
for Kerry's "Camera FLASH!"