Of Flying Collection


Squirrels and I have heard
plastic bags fly better than birds

I think squirrels can read
’cause I saw a plastic bag in a tree

He, a bird house grantee,
a bushy tail scholar,
took a bag along branches,
a critter in a house for a dollar, but

with a plastic puff
it sealed the exit tough

I heard frantic scratches
’til his head popped out —
I had no doubt, he
read the directions
for a waterproof house

When high winds disturb
plastic bags fly higher,
fly better than birds

Which droppings from heaven
shall a squirrel prefer —
feather or plastic, if
foulness is elastic

I bought you
bottles of perfume
of wine, but
the terrorists made me
lose them at the airport

I flew here by something old — well,
hitched a ride on a pterodactyl —
the Jurassic pilot gave me no peanuts
but I didn’t get eaten

I am so tired of ancient
of modern
pains and planes

Thus I thrust my arms
an evolved mammal
to bring you me
without Champagne, so
pour me out,
disarm me
to charm me
while I undress my
stress in your arms
He heard the word on the news,
but I’m not going to hunt gorillas
I had explained to the little one. This place

is infested with guerillas.
We’d been ordered to be colder,
following the role of soldiers
playing with enemy children
putting hearts on our shoulders,
bringing candy and games
in crosshairs jokenly aimed. I have

hated the bubbly joy memory
with promises unkept. I remember
little memories like foam
of my baby brother at home
laughing to funny skipping heights
taking a kite to fly in song
but with winds catching me wrong,
with wooden frame snapping right away,
I promised to bring it back to life one day. Nevermind

the bubble memories art
seeing war children in the breeze,
those queasy bullets hitting my heart, while
brother’s promise I gave to enemy children,
promising them a kite ill sent,
but with orders in hand, minds well bent,
we were fired on from a village hell lent. The children
we were ordered to kill
and I lent brother’s face

to the kid that I killed.
The kite is broken.
—- Douglas Gilbert
(Henry Le Châtelier)

Poetry Books By Douglas Gilbert