Today's poem is by Christopher Locke


It was the last good thing we heard: a bus
station bird more dismal than some errant
mudsplash dried between the arches. But
its voice bathed the concrete in iight, sang
our attention back into something brighter
than our tiny struggles: the bag handle catching
in a harried taxi; the luggage wheel stuttering
its last complaint until snapping like a tooth.

Once again, we had asked for nothing and nothing
was bartered for in favor. It is what we'd grown
accustomed to in Mexico, but still managed
to surprise us when most needed. The bus had
just arrived amongst the fumes, saddening us,
proof that this was all ending, and our crowded
bags were hauled into the vehicle's dark maw;
six yellow tickets handed back in a tidy exchange.

Our adopted city curved behind us, its hills pressing
the air like clavicles unskinned, our home now
abandoned, but more likely indifferent: Guanajuato
at ease with so many streaming faces, so many
hands reaching with plucked desire, the streets
stacked with buildings dumfounded by colors
for which even priests couldn't atone. But the bird.

We needed that. Yes. All four of our heads
turned upwards, listening to his watered
symphony to remind us that beauty rises
from the common, caught fluttering
in the breath of every day.

Copyright © 2017 Christopher Locke All rights reserved
from Ordinary Gods: Truths, Lies, & Exaggerations Built South of the Border
Salmon Poetry
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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