Jeff Burt – The Way the Starlings Frolicked – 3

 The Way the Starlings Frolicked
by Jeff Burt

The way the starlings frolicked in a swarm 
in the overcast November

thinning to a chute of turbulent wings, 
expanded to an eddying flood,

pulled up in a dead climb, plunged
like a thunderous waterfall to a thicket

then bound to telephone wires, 
the zizz of a call stolen by their claws,

off to an old barn with no roof
rafters exposed–

your absence like darkness 
settles in my ribs


Jeff Burt grew up in Wisconsin and Nebraska before finding the redwoods and Monterey Bay, and settled on the Central Coast of California. He has work in Clerestory, Rabid Oak, The Monarch Review, u-city, and Mojave Heart Review. He won the 2017 Cold Mountain Review Narrative Poetry Prize.