January Falling

This chill mid-winter wind startles

the last of Summer’s leaves loose

a spectacular flowing flight

from trees clustered along my homeward drive.


Twisting together like smoke, they move,

and wind along and above this darkening lane

leaves swirling and falling ahead, before my car

and off across the stubbled, midwinter cornfield

now crisp and bare and brown.


Dark leaves spin, scatter, stutter and still

falling to earth, dropping grounded

The bitter air, empty.

My car and I move on along this frozen field

into a grey and silent twilight


In the space of one quick breath

a swift burst of life

And wings rise together out of stillness

filling the chill air

This winter flight of starlings climbs and curves

wheeling as one, they lift up and on

full of wings, full of life

Not falling leaves


 rising wings.


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