A growing sense of ominous purpose

The birds are gathering to plan something.

vexed to nightmare

the birds grow increasingly restless. on my drive in,
sparrows, redwing blackbirds, and seagulls swooped
in front of my car, teasing me to plow through them.
and a brilliant cardinal paused on the rusty rail

by the side entrance to Boyle, flitting his wings and
flicking me side eye, head cocked, listening, before
flapping a few steps away into the cold gravel as i
passed. it’s as if they know something monumental

is on its way, a change to turn the balance back in
their favor. another cold snap holds us in its huge mouth,
though clear sun pours through new-leafed trees, warming
tiny chartreuse leaves into reaching fingertips. the church bell

signals the eighth hour. i’m safe, for now, in my office, though
bird chatter streams through dusty windows to find me.