photo by françois biajoux
Scott Thomas Outlar lives and writes in the suburbs outside of Atlanta, Georgia. His work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net. Selections of his poetry have been translated into Afrikaans, Albanian, Dutch, French, Italian, Persian, and Serbian. Outlar hosts the site 17Numa.com where links to his published poetry, fiction, essays, interviews, reviews, live events, radio podcasts, and books can be found. His most recent book, Abstract Visions of Light, was released in 2018 through Alien Buddha Press.
Blackbirds envelop the green grass
across the street
early in the morning,
moving together in a cluster of fluttering wings.
I shift my position in bed
to gain a better view,
now squatting and looking out the window
as the dark wave gains a new tide
and comes shrieking and soaring as one blanket mass
straight toward me.
For a brief moment I fear
the yawning grave is finally calling me
back to the dust, dirt and ash
from whence I once came,
but then, in unison, the wave breaks,
the aggressive wings grow calm, and
the swarm settles down
as it lands now in my front yard.
I exhale and smile.
The beauty of chaos shifts
as order is reclaimed in my respite -
the reaper has granted my reprieve;
and though I know he will surely
one day come hunting for me,
whether it be with a merle of blackbirds,
a murder of crows,
a wake of vultures,
or one-on-one, all alone, with his scythe in hand,
at least for now I can lay back
safely and soundly in my warm bed,
knowing that while I dream about the future,
it will be the worms, outside in the cold,
that serve as today's sacrifice to the cycle.
Scott Thomas Outlar