A Sonnet for Snowbirds

Up here, weak sun, chill rain, black ice and worse;
the year in quarters: bud, bloom, blown and gone;
a land of small birds, crows, and gulls, the curse
of mounting leaves and snow, of faces wan.
A weekday, workday world of out and back,
of life diced up to suit some stranger’s will,
where those who race—rat-like and grim—will pack
each Happy Hour and drown their pain in swill.

Decades they dream of worlds beyond their cage:
the warm, slow south where palms click overhead,
where winter lasts a day and not an age,
where each new dawn’s a Saturday in bed;
where all is evergreen and birds grow large;
where the caged at last are sun-drenched, free, in charge.

                                                            Abbott Ikeler

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