Poetry

LEARNING TO FLY

an angel reflects on human discovery

Before they knew how to fly they watched birds
all that flap & flutter of feathersA boy once tried
it himself Icarus-like but with less
immediate successhauling himself to the top of a wall
only to fall over & overagain but at least
without the plummet into the blue Mediterranean

Whenever the Maker laughedWatch this
delighted by their contraptions rattling
along the beach for us the angels who’ve never
had to learnit was like watching them struggling to reach
Godlifted on the wind of the Spiritbut tripping
when some preachertied their shoelaces together

The boy wondered whether angels have feathers
though knew little of wind & even less of weightlessness
Leonardo tried many thingsknowing how to look
& guess& learn from every fall
perhaps knowing how God loves a puzzle
the biggestan intricate universemadeoh so discoverable

  • D.S. Martin is the author of four poetry collections, including Ampersand (2018), and Conspiracy of Light: Poems Inspired by the Legacy of C.S. Lewis (2013), both from Cascade Books. His new collection Angelicus will be published in 2021. He is Poet-in-Residence at McMaster Divinity College. Visit his blog Kingdom Poets (http://kingdompoets.blogspot.com) and his website (https://dsmartin.ca).

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