A Winter’s Day in Phoenix

A man lay softly down
to sleep in his rags
on freshly mown grass
behind a Mercedes
parked at the curb. A festive
time and the leaves
are still falling
in our city with seasons
all its own. It’s a day
for walking slowly, watching
tree by tree
for a kinglet or looking
around for the Cooper’s hawk
who perched a while
on our aviary but failed
to penetrate the chicken wire.
It’s a last chance day but
no outward sign of hope
is visible, just a slowly
circling Red-tail haloed
by the sun. It’s a no-burn,
breathe with care,
look both ways and take
the next step kind of day;
an unpresidential, think
before you say
what’s on your mind
day; a day too cloudy
to be trusted; a day trying
to be a holiday
in the winter
of our discontent.

David Chorlton is a transplanted European, who has lived in Phoenix since 1978. His poems have appeared in many publications on- and off-line, and reflect his affection for the natural world, as well as occasional bewilderment at aspects of human behavior. His Selected Poems appeared from FutureCycle in 2014. Read other articles by David.