The geese have come with glaciers
on their feet,
slick wings and winter eyes
artful in early sun and cold debris.
Come April, life is easily their cry
trumpeting worlds up-close
and worlds that bolt out of my reach.
A curve repeats.
Town on a cliff; lives in a cave;
wheat in the mill; babies to save…
They bear my heart’s ambivalence,
these men, whose arms
are road and mountain—brown and
bare—each rock, a common
Adam’s rib, each bruise, the providence
of wills. The tunnel’s open now
for young and worn,
a railing holds the ribbon of this race.
Children on wheels; vines up the fence,
on mornings when our mourning ends.
Come April, I am nothing,
nothing like the birds—
I need a face, an urgency up close:
I dare not fly: the sky’s alive with geese.
by Sofia M. Starnes
Member at Large
Sofia M. Starnes is the Poet Laureate of Virginia. She will give the keynote Commencement address at the University of Virginia College at Wise on May 10. For more information, click here. She has recently published The Nearest Poem Anthology, a project she initiated as Poet Laureate which explores through poetry and essays, the “multiple lives of poetry”. Click here to visit the publisher’s website for more info.