The Maynard
Spring 2014

Glen Armstrong

Never Quite Coming of Age in Pontiac Michigan

It’s never too late
to enjoy the information age.
But first,
there might be a bird in the basement.

There might be a hole in the house
where the birds get in.

I have been warned often enough
of the chimney and our home’s
state of disrepair.

There are discoveries to be made
on cable television,
countless programs on birds and home improvement.

A bird’s wing houses over 10,000 bones.
I wish that I had 10,000 bones.

A bird gets up early in the morning.
It catches the worm, and the worm becomes it.

Or it leaves the nest
to stick in the neck of a cat like a bone,
a sharp and slender bone.

All of my wishes are wrong.

The north wind blows
several birds from the sky.

It’s best that I stay inside.
My conclusions are all wrong,
as are the few decisions that I make

          out of feathers.
          Horse feathers.
          I love that one.

It must be wrong to love that one
when the wind blows
and I have no other way

to be inside, just a bit
more inside than I already am.

If someone could show me how to compose
a protest song, it would go like this:

          When we were children, even inside
          our mothers, we knew nothing
          real existed inside the television.

This is a comfort; this is an empty box
I will someday inherit.