Nighthawks

January 1, 2018
By light_of_lutalica GOLD, Sunnyvale, California
light_of_lutalica GOLD, Sunnyvale, California
11 articles 20 photos 2 comments

Favorite Quote:
Laughing, crying, tumbling, mumbling.
Gotta do more, gotta be more.
Chaos screaming, chaos dreaming.
Gotta do more, gotta be more!

- Charlie Dalton (Dead Poets Society)


Nighthawks flap and glide through invisible stars—
Like that person who brushed past your shoulder today and walked away,
Becoming just another missed opportunity,
Just as you started to feel the familiarity behind that face
As its features faded from memory,
Dissolving into the air like the thick clouds of cigarette smoke suffocating you.
A feather floats down from barren skies to your pillow;
You pick it up and run your crooked fingers over its shaft,
Silently counting every volatile friendship
And every time a falcon swooped down and carried you to the clouds,
Only to let you fall and leave your heart to be pecked out by vultures.
Vultures—a constant reminder of how society kills too many mockingbirds
By luring them in with a prettier nest.
You turn around to see a nighthawk bravely staring into your eyes,
Not knowing the demons that lie behind the doors to your soul.
It realizes its deadly mistake and proceeds to fly away,
Its wings flapping sickeningly sweet thoughts in your direction,
Washing over you like chloroform,
Somniferous air cleansing your memory of these plaguing thoughts.


The author's comments:

My poem is inspired by 'nighthawk', a word that John Koenig includes in The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows

This is it's official definition according to him:

n. a recurring thought that only seems to strike you late at night—an overdue task, a nagging guilt, a looming and shapeless future—that circles high overhead during the day, that pecks at the back of your mind while you try to sleep, that you can successfully ignore for weeks, only to feel its presence hovering outside the window, waiting for you to finish your coffee, passing the time by quietly building a nest.

It's a beautiful word with a beautiful definition and I wanted to capture my interpretation of it in this piece.


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