The Vulture

The vulture picks away at the bones

In the heat of the sun

Carrion before him

A feast of rare

Portion and quality

Looking about at the plain

Feeling the wind

Gentle and warm from the sky

He thinks of the sky

The warm spots he finds

Floating for hours

Surveying all that is below

Beauty and bounty

Plunging his head into the

Wet decay of carcass he

Hears their sound in the distance

His brother and accomplices

Come to clean the landscape with him

Full, his time is done here and he arises

Taking flight and elevating toward a perch

And grasping a large branch

Sun baking the skin of his head

Drying the juice of the carcass

Surveying what is around him

Heat dust life sun water plants

And bones

He is the creator of bones

Dry white and dusty

Defiler defender devourer

And disinfectant

Watching a small rodent

Thinking of life and death

Not two sides of a coin

Not an equation

But separate

His domain the edge

Death not beauty

Death never beauty

But sustenance

The issue not desire

The issue not direction

The issue acceptance

That no desire

Changes the beauty of life

No direction away from the

Bones that all become

His brothers squawk below feasting

The breeze and sun whispers to them


I will not be bitter when it’s time to go

When my eyes close upon the sky

I will not mourn for what I did not know

When my last moments arrive

What I had

Was enough

Gene G. McLaughlin 2013

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