The Birdman of Seville

Thursday
is his day

or is it
mine

the day i pull
                 up
spent
tired
            empty
of all the things
                   they
look
for me to have

ventilated ‘gainst
Summer
i sit

remembering ice
remembering snow
remembering
                   Cold
trickling down
my neck

reminding myself,
my bleary
             sweating
self,  just how
                    much
i hate it, will hate it
when it
          comes
again

then

       he
appears

the day’s uneaten
                         crumbs
nestled
in a wrinkled MrsBaird’s
bag
      hung
loose
from his arm

his shirt sleeves
                     stuffed
like pickled onions
into the olives
of his ill-fitting
gloves,
his baggy khakis
                        stuffed
like pale sausages
into the stumps
of his too-large
boots

he
     turns
to me

away from
his feeders

unsmiling

and i wonder
as he stands
brown on brown on tan on
tan

do they
           regard
him
as a god,
these grackles
these killdeer
these gray cat-
birds, who swarm
                          hungrily
at his feet

and i think
how better
how
      much
better
it must
         be
to be a
          god
a God
than
       just
to be
        simply
only
      one
more
         tired
wizened
used up
lonely
        old
man

who fills the
volunteer bird
feeders
at the
         place
he will
         die

at the
        place
that holds not a
                     trace
of how
he has
         lived

©s rogers 20 august 2011