On the Oregon Coast
by Jim Thielman

My new stunt kite shudders and shakes as it
makes a noisy loop. It needs a bridle adjustment,
but instead I let it sail left as far as it can go,
stall there, then calmly float, cradled by wind.
Four gray gulls arrive and stop just above
to wonder at the brightly colored kite,
something they never did when the kite spun
loops or crisscrossed back and forth endlessly.

When those birds leave, a white gull takes their place,
and almost seems to speak to kite and me,
“Thanks for a chance to pause and see
a silly human doing something sane.”
The ocean is blue velvet with white teeth.
I can see the wind fluff white neck feathers
of the gull and yet we each hold our place,
a still point in the currents of our lives.

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