The flock of clouds witnessed him from above
manifesting destiny with a shovel, a glove,
a bag of seed, barrels, grapes, a trelis of rope,
yet it was not in his blood to bear the hope
nor pain of this rugged coast.
He was born beneath another banner’s song, beside
another sea, and contentment can be pried
even from the rugged hands of a happy man
whose breath and back still tend a land
his heart has not been called.
And so he rode a train of metal boxes east
along a metal scar, wheels grinding on the piece
of mind that churns still faster than the gears
and turns the soiled decade into a sapling year
of hard and unplowed births.
Hard as concrete screaming by for miles outside
the city gates, vacant lots, a thousand vacant eyes
attached to empty hands still full of strength,
and through his pane, he plots a garden’s length
beneath the howl of gray.
A year has come and past and parking lots remain
yet lawns are sprouting squash and cabbages and grain.
A strong and pretty girl kneels beside him planting seeds;
they have a secret chicken that they hide from the police,
and he is learning how to laugh.
The flock of city clouds whisper from above,
“All of us are migrants looking for a land to love;
we are but a vapor, a momentary mist
growing gray and heavy until the blessed bliss
of giving ourselves away.”