The wind sways the feeder Like an old lantern in a rainstorm. The sparrows ride it and eat. Below them on a fountain, Below them on the ground, Mourning doves quarrel For whatever falls. In the adjacent patio A small dog occasionally yelps, But like a sneeze it’s boring unless loud. What does it think watching the birds Unfazed in their quick pleasure? The wind makes love to itself. Its center gurgles, forms a mouth To scoop me up in my room.
Do not offend a swan by feeding it: It’s not a duck or goose. It will not waterpolo for you As ducks or geese do When you toss bread crumbs at them. It will not simper and giggle In the glints of green water And dive and upend its feathery rump As the others do. You came to see a swan.
Ivanov Reyez was an English professor at Odessa College. His poetry is included in The Café Review, Eclipse, Pinyon, The Blue Mountain Review, Paris Lit Up, and other journals. He won the riverSedge Poetry Prize 2015. He is the author of Poems, Not Poetry (Finishing Line Press, 2013). His short fiction has appeared in Sephardic-American Voices: Two Hundred Years of a Literary Legacy, 34th Parallel Magazine, Texas Short Stories, and elsewhere.