In the Memphis Airport
Above the concourse, from a beam, A little warbler pours forth song. Beneath him, hurried humans stream: Some draw wheeled suitcases along Or from a beeping belt or purse Apply a cell phone to an ear; Some pause at banks of monitors Where times and gates for flights appear. Although by nature flight-endowed, He seems too gentle to reproach These souls who soon will climb through cloud In first class, business class, and coach. He may feel that it's his mistake He’s here, but someone ought to bring A net to catch and help him make His own connections north to spring. He cheeps and trills on, swift and sweet, Though no one outside hears his strains. There, telescopic tunnels greet The cheeks of their arriving planes; A ground crew welcomes and assists Luggage that skycaps, treating bags Like careful ornithologists, Banded with destination tags.
"In the Memphis Airport" from Toward the Winter Solstice (Swallow Press/Ohio University Press, 2006, www.ohioswallow.com).