Conspiracy of Sparrows

What are they heralding, perched along the curb,
our sudden shower an hour ago a river
stopping the drain I should have rushed to clean?

How can whatever day I might anticipate
be otherwise than this wondrous, unearned rejoicing
clear because their air is rising? And we all have wings?


Driving Home
—for Jimmy Block

I watched the bats of summer in their flight
above the warehouses, the moonlight passing through
their passing, the light which will outlast
this moment and the bats and all summers of the earth.

They shed a moment’s silver from their wings
to keep them there, in memory’s yesterday.

To spread them here, everlastings’ vanishings—

Published in the October 19, 2018 issue: View Contents

Peter Cooley is Professor Emeritus of English and Director of Creative Writing at Tulane University where he taught from 1975 to 2018. His eleventh book of poetry, The One Certain Thing, was published by Carnegie Mellon in February. He is poetry editor of Christianity and Literature and was Louisiana Poet Laureate from 2015 to 2017.

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