The dry wit in the corner breaks its cage.
The window's tempting: it thinks "Somewhere south
I'll not endure these corners." Nor shall I:
slow days again will lengthen. Northern sky
goes gray and hunkers down, as in Denmark
to which I've been but twice. I know a girl

in Hamburg now; my wife lives in Fabron,
where I twice sparked a rusted hoe on stone
that mimicked garden space. The small bird whirls
but can't ascend: it sets a trajet straight
for the farthest wall, and in a rage
sets beak to plaster. I deserve a drink,

but snowed skies haunt me now. What if I think
I'm like that silly bird? Our same sky's dark.
I catch her in my hands. The panicked mouth
keeps screaming of the tropics, and its fate,
but back she goes, into her cage, like me,
as back go all strange creatures who would flee.

—W.F. Lantry, Washington, D.C.