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Sorrow lands quietly 
on the edge of my path.

He is an old bird.
His smooth blacks, frayed 
and cracked by the pull of earth and time.
His pure whites, grey-yellowed 
by damp winds and harsh light.

He limps. 
His eyes shift everywhere 
but where he's going.
His splintered talons 
and chipped beak 
set about the hard ground 
over and over.

He is an old bird.
He is alone.

I stop and turn, 
and slowly stoop
to connect with eye contact.
Sorrow hops away.

Not like those tiny birds. 
Frantic, sudden clouds of fear.  
Winging it from anything that looms near.
To the rooftops and lamppost tops,
and the high wires spun between,
to Twitter and preen in disarray.

Sorrow just hops away.

No further than two arms’ length,
to where he knows he could escape.
Stands still, cocks his head, 
shakes out his wings and tail a bit, 
and looks right back at me - 
while, for a moment, I reflect 
on our similarities.

He is an old bird.
He is alone.
He is unafraid. 

Sorrow seems happy 
to watch me walk away.