SONG FOR PILGRIMS
You walk to the steps of the capitol, sit, and unpack your lunch: warm tuna, an unwashed apple. A man sits fifty feet away. You can feel a word problem build between the two of you.
The final dinosaurs chose to be birds, you think. It may take ten million years to fly like that.
Wind wets its fingers, turns your book pages. Wind blows desire into everything. Like the leash of a dog curiously sniffing, your tie jerks behind you. The foils and plastics of your lunch get up to leave, to meet the legion of their kind in a field, some field where they meet outside Topeka, which is where you are, meaning they are close to their conclusion.
Mostly, they keep to the ground, but occasionally, they surprise themselves, lift off for a second.
Justin Runge lives in Lawrence, Kansas, where he serves as poetry editor of Parcel. He is the author of two chapbooks, Plainsight (New Michigan Press, 2012) and Hum Decode (Greying Ghost Press, 2014). His work appears or is forthcoming in Best New Poets, Cincinnati Review, Poetry Northwest, DIAGRAM, and elsewhere. He can be found at www.justinrunge.me.