This Flight

This flight, then, before the last.
Distance won,
centering in.

There were wild birds,
were there not? Feeding
from my fingers?

Or were they children?

This feathering is not down
bedding of ducks
on the pond, wings folded,
feeding from the fingers of my children,
their bright faces bending
toward reflection.

This feathering is for flight.
I might think this
to be that other time,
mistake the wild bird for its image,
but for pinions.

I am still a long way from home
but turning now,
banking on air,
coming in.

From Another River: New and Selected Poems (Amherst Writers & Artists Press, 2005) by Pat Schneider. Copyright © 2005 by Pat Schneider. Used with the permission of the Estate of Pat Schneider.