A Warm-Weather-Weekend-Commuter

Steve arrived in Southampton,
Every week,
With a Bird in his Bag.

It was a Gym Bag,
Navy blue with red trim,
A shoebox within.

In he would march,
The Lawyer from New York City,
With a broad smile on his face,
And a Bird in his Bag.

“It’s so good for him!”
He would say,
Addressing an audience
Of Host and Hostess,
As he unzipped the Bag,
And opened the Box
To transfer the Bird
Into its permanent visitors cage,
Where the bird might relax
All weekend long
Behind metal bars.

Steve’s Bird
Was a small green parrot,
The African kind.

Sitting on its perch,
In the fancy yellow cage,
Hung in the garden,
It would whisper
To its fine-feathered cousins,
Flying freely.

Winged creatures
Darting midst ancient oaks,
Lingering long in the shade
Of sheltering branches,
Hopping happily about flowering bushes,
Rejoicing midst hydrangeas and roses,

Swooping through fragrant sweetness,
Dipping down poolside to drink fresh waters.
Gliding gracefully through baby blue skies,
Dancing through dotted cloud fluffs,
Warmly resplendent in the golden sun.

The little African Parrot
Would gaze through
The prison of its cage
Warbling and chirping.

“They’re very delicate –
These Birds!” said Steve,
Addressing no one in particular,
While closing the Bird
Back into the Box,
On Sunday eve.

“They can easily catch cold,
With the slightest draft!”
Said He,
Zipping the gym Bag back up again.

“I could never be cruel
To any animal!”
Steve declared.
“My African Parrot and Me,
Why, we’ve been together
For awhile…”

I start to say…
But He does not listen.
So I ponder and muse
And think of
Slave ships sailing
From African shores,
Hulls filled with human cargo,
Chained and bound.
“It’s good for them…”

Their Masters would claim,
“After all, they’re fed,
And cared for…”

What price, freedom!