Tuesday, January 27, 2009

"A Rescue" by John Updike

I wrote some words today that will see print.
Maybe they will last "forever"--
that is, more than ten years, in that
someone will read them, their ink making
a light scratch on his mind, or hers.
I think back with greater satisfaction
upon a yellow bird--a goldfinch?--
that had flown into our potting shed
and could not get out,
battering its wings unintelligently
upon the dusty panes of the never-opened windows.
Without much reflection, for once, I stepped
to where its panicked heart
was making commotion, the flared wings drumming,
and with clumsy soft hands
pinned it against a pane,
held cupped this agitated essence of the air,
and through the open door released it,
like a self-flung ball,
to all that lovely perishing outdoors.

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