“I walk away, backward, with a touch of the hat.”
—Martin Amis, Time’s Arrow
Sky of deepening blues, and like smoke
unbillowing, chimney swifts swirl
in chittering revolutions over their brick
canopy. One by one, they dive into
their makeshift roosts for the night,
funnelling back into the flue. A polite
crowd watches. And counts. It’s late May,
a full month into Spring, and the swifts
have returned, smokeless turmoil, to feed
on beetles, flies, winged ants, and moths.
Tulips have speared through the earth,
lilacs have begun to perfume the air,
and emergent clutches, cradled in bracket
nests, will soon crackle like fire.
Cover photo courtesy of Kim Giseok.