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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Why so sad, black-tailed gulls?



Why so sad, black-tailed gulls?
You’ve come to Wal-Mart on a chilly, gloomy day
When the long-awaited showers have finally come
To save this drought-stricken land.
(Of course, I wish they would create pools
That could grow fish for you to enjoy.)

You step on this concrete ground
With Christmas shoppers in a rush.
You come as a clan and miss no one home--
In Japan, Korea, or China
In far away East Asian soil.

Why so sad, black-tailed gulls?
You’ve finally arrived like other two-leg migrants.
Oh, I know…
You must be very tired and hungry,
And there’s no fish in this concrete,
And the trash bins are locked.
And if ever you get to the food shops,
You’ll find frozen fish.
Now that you wouldn’t want!

Why so sad, black-tailed gulls?
You’ve finally arrived like other two-leg migrants
Oh, I know…
You with white underparts and dark feathers
Are in your second winter.
You with yellow bills and legs are in your third winter.
And when you get another color in your bills—red,
You’re finally in your fourth and last winter—
The end of all winters God is willing to give.


Why so sad, black-tailed gulls?
You’ve finally arrived like other two-leg migrants.
You’ve got four winters to enjoy;
others have none if caught and sent home.
You’ve got four winters to roam freely;
others will be enslaved by their masters.
You’ve got four winters to fly happily;
others will be in dreadful drudgery—
And all the winters of their lives will be chilly.

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