Trajectories #6

Half in, halfway out
of sleep; it’s Creation’s first day
waiting for the light
to peel away from darkness. The fourth
day begins at seven when the sun
shakes itself loose
and sits on the eastern rooftops.
Days five and six
follow within minutes, with the White-crowned
sparrows first, then
rabbits on the early moisture
absorbed in their moment
but still wary. No time now
for the day of rest
with the TV news about to break
like an accident it’s painful
to watch but hard
to look away. The planet
aches. In any language the prognosis
isn’t good. But the Costa’s
hummingbird doesn’t know what the newscaster
knows. It arrives
on time every day, having flown
through the rainbows
stored inside the Earth
waiting for rain. On the eighth day
mythologies are written. Eight o’clock,
wide awake, three hundred
heartbeats in a minute,
a story never intended
to end.

David Chorlton, a longtime resident of Phoenix, Arizona, who has a European past rooted in industrial Manchester, England, and cultural Vienna in Austria. The latest chapter of his writing life is Speech Scroll, a long poem due from Cholla Needles Press in Joshua Tree, California. Read other articles by David.