and wondered why there should be a fence
at all and asphalt on which to ride and
overgrown fields full of red-winged blackbirds
that repeat the same series of sounds
without variation as if they were machines.
He stopped at the abandoned school
and threw rocks through the few windows
that hadn’t already been broken and thought
he was always arriving late, to ideas like
the idea that he might not have existed at all,
and to the uneasy dismissal of that idea
provided by the sound of shattering glass,
by the familiar thrill of picking up a rock
and making it go where it wouldn’t otherwise.
The birds around the school, crows mostly,
said things he thought he understood,
not the necessary utterance of machines
but something willed, something that had to be
the way the fencerow when he pedaled home
had to separate the overgrown fields from
the asphalt, and one another, and the sky
had to shatter before you saw it's constellations.