This chill mid-winter wind startles
the last of Summer’s leaves loose,
a surging flow in flight,
from trees clustered along my homeward drive.
Twisting together, like smoke, they move
and wind along and above this darkening lane
Dry leaves swirl and fall ahead, before my car
and off across the stubbled, winter cornfield
now crisp and bare and brown.
They stutter and still and
finally fall to earth, grounded
The bitter air stands empty.
My car and I drive homeward
along this empty and 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 wind above the frozen field.
This sudden winter flight of starlings
climbs and curves
wheeling as one, they lift up and on
full of wings, full of life.
Not falling leaves