While the motor boat rattles on
I see them there suddenly taking off
as if shot from the roofs in a gust
away from Venice stone banks
that are rows of houses really
with windows directly over the water expanse.
A small flock fluttering in haste
over the lagoon, towards a horizon
of sandbars and brambles, and the brewing
A small flock and then another,
yes, they are many, but wavering, even vague,
not at all steady as the gulls,
as if they loved being unnoticed
and in that way regularly let pass.
I have never imagined birds like these
taking such a long air plunge,
maybe they have been preparing themselves
all their life for it
and now the moment has come,
the big leap.
Fast beating wings
like soft arrows
in the dawn sky
and, below, ripples on the water.
Stage after stage something of ours
and stays, a ceaseless
succession of wings
asking for readiness
while brushing the gaze.