- Poems by Jim McCurry

Night Bird by Patrick Flynn

My music plays in cool air to night birds
like myself as the moon crawls into a crescent.
One quarter of what I know was once clearer.

I no longer count stars hiding in hazy skies,
and instead, fly into an orange moon 
lowered behind a dense treeline.

In dreams when all birds can soar,
broken wings are healed. Only night birds
are awake in shadows across stillborn trees.

Later, darkness falls into the morning sun
and disappears, hiding behind the walls
of any heart just as needy. This is pride.

As a night bird my wings are worn, warm
from flight into shadows that always repeat
somehow—what doesn’t turn before danger.

Droughts of air fall below my wings, effort
cooling those under me. On rising winds, across 
a clear horizon, I’m lifted above quiet trees.

Somewhere August by Patrick Flynn

As spring comes after winter so does heaven: Overnight, southwest winds covered the forest. The air is still now. Cold desperation trapped in rigid plaster escapes with its walled humidity. Indian summer bathes every windowpane with fog. Again, a lucent glaze from somewhere August shows me I’ve never seen this morning, and see darkly through the insulated glass of eternity. The two-lane in front of my house is damp; a night’s worth of cold rushes out from my car-- balancing the circle: a back road, once city streets. I start the motor with this clarity. Outside: warm air is bundled beside other mornings braced for winter hiding in cemented bricks and stones: hearts set to hourglass chimes because reading shadows was never a gift. The road reflects gray light softened under quilted skies that are December’s sudden gusts of decision. Black tires sizzle over leftover rain: yesterdays, and the loud sounds of a new year. I hear cars that pass sooner; whatever is coldest lingers. My turns are made in forests I walked, listening to the sound of swaying branches or wind traded by tangled trees. Still, today’s warm breezes leave winter behind; trees sheding their chill: cold seeped from inside frozen limbs.

Patrick Flynn is a computer programmer who has written several screenplays: one was a quarter-finalist and another was a semi-finalist; published several books of poetry and a Northeastern North Carolina regional magazine distributed to Outer Banks' newsstands for two years.

He is a graduate of East Carolina University.

Contact Patrick by e-mail:ncwriter@net-change.com

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