This morning I watched my neighbors
departing for work. Starlings
snatch red stars from the dogwood tree.
At dusk they return, compacts and minivans
up and down the block, toting
tool kits, briefcases, children, groceries.
All day, I haven't strayed
ten yards from this birch wood desk
red stars, yellow beaks,
trying to true the mind's wavering,
prodding and pruning with my pen,
hoping to soothe six brief blue lines
of poetry, to get them to breathe.