Sunday, April 11, 2021

IN THE GLOAMING


I was crossing a bridge on the River Callender,
when a tiny red-breasted bird hopped up to me.
Fearful of stepping on it, I froze.
And it promptly fell in love with my foot. 
Was he seeking solidarity with my shoe? It was red.
Was he begging, did he want feeding? 
I had nothing to offer. I stared down at it, 
and the penny dropped, I realized 
it was an Old World robin. Not a thrush, 
not the large American robin
that visits us each spring. I thought of how, 
sometimes the renaming of things 
fails us with false similes, not metaphors.  
Impossibly tiny, it communed with my boot.
I wasn’t too sure what the attraction was about. 
Needless to say, we stood a very long time 
on the foot bridge, in the gloaming,
that robin and I, while the river carried on.

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