In the natural history museum
paintings on the wall illustrate
the massive wingspans of certain
birds. The woman I am with is less
than a golden eagle + an Andean
condor. Outside it is hot + breezy
+ she turns in circles watching
real vultures, her head craned
back, circling on a thermal +
casting fast moving shadows
in the parking lot. I wonder what
is the oldest common dream among
modern humans. Though I suspect
it is something more basic than
flight, she continues to crane.
Behind the museum are chainlink
enclosures, as part of a raptor
center, housing injured birds
of prey, or those otherwise deemed
unable to survive out there, up there.
Kevin Weidner received an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Alabama. Poems have been published in nationally recognized literary journals such as Hayden’s Ferry Review, Passages North, and the Southeast Review. Short fiction and reviews have appeared in venues like Yalobusha Review and The Hairsplitter. He was nominated for the Best New Poets anthology in 2015 and in 2011 was a finalist for the Ruth Lilly Poetry Fellowship. He currently lives in Brattleboro, Vermont.