Fourth Floor

by Richard Vince

From the distant forest,
A column of smoke rises
Into the coldly beautiful
November sky from which I am
Protected by two panes of glass
And music that takes me back
To the warmth of early September.

The trees beyond the rooftops
Have borrowed browns and reds
For the days before their leaves
Leave them naked in the face
Of the winter winds, while
The sky is blue and grey shades
Of winter paleness, merging
Into a distant, hazy horizon.

The smoke is no longer rising;
It is now a darker grey merging
With the sky, becoming another
Layer of nondescript beauty.

Two lone birds, left behind
By their fellows, cast helplessly
Around the sky, looking for
Somewhere warm to spend winter
Where the sky is a deeper blue
And the world is not so pallid.

* * *

The sky has changed from
Pale to dark, and all is hidden
Save a few specks of
Man made, orange light, some
Close by and some forming
An artificial horizon, marking
The way of a distant road.

The birds will now be far
From here, still alone,
Always just behind their kindred,
Continuing through life chasing
And never catching up.


Posted on 11/24/2004
Copyright © 2022 Richard Vince

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