On the Road

The Birds Over Kosovo

They storm the skybirds in sky
announcing the sunset
and sharpen their wings
on the sky’s blushing hues.
They beckon me out onto the balcony
of another Pristina dawn.
Possessed by their haunting caws,
into the twilight I am all at once drawn.

Black as tar,
countless as the stars,
these odd birds rearrange the sky –
flocks and flocks in fans, drifts and bands.
Ghoulish, forsaken, ominous are they,
numerous, nameless and all the same.
Like lost, empty souls stalking the night,
they go plucking away at my senses.

I pass a man in the darkness
kicking the trunk of a large tree.
Crowded and crammed in the boughs,
the birds return, “And whose tree is it?”
and cackle on into the irrepressible night.
Slightly crazed? He just stares upwards.
Nothing but a dark street, rubble at my feet,
the birds in the trees and the eyes of the moon.