Mockingbird Fever

The mockingbirds are singing, singing, and
they won’t hold back. It’s witnessing
season and the doorbell rings.
Nothing much to do today but make
the season’s music. Door to door
and greet whoever’s home
by asking if they’ve thought about their souls.
It’s Yes, Maybe or a straightforward
No. If mockingbirds know happiness
they’re telling everyone. Springtime
is a good time for spreading the word, time
when secrets bloom and mating’s in the air.
On a half-sun, half-cloud
kind of day a white wingflash
shines a long way. Missionaries obeying orders
from the mystic world are standing
like sobriety with a promise, an opinion
and time to wait until
a starburst of hope appears in a stranger’s eye.
The mockingbirds can’t help
they sing their truth
like certain Russian poets who fell
from the edge of the Earth
with the ink hardly dry on their thoughts.

David Chorlton is a longtime resident of the desert zone in the Southwest, a landscape he is very attached to. Before Arizona he lived in England and Austria, and he has finally seen publication of a book decades in the making: The Long White Glove from New Meridian Arts. Nothing to do with poetry, rather a true crime story from 1960s Vienna. Read other articles by David.