When the Bats Fly

“…Austin is believed to have the world’s largest urban bat population…”
NY Times

In the Marigold Restaurant on Madison Avenue
We sit and talk of bats emerging
From under the Congress Avenue Bridge
We do not talk of your son’s dying.
The regularity of the bats flying comforts us.
When the light fades on the evening,
Blindly and quickly swirling, they snare their prey.
There are so many of them
The sky seems masked with charcoal.

Our table sits next to the window
The sidewalk swirls with shoppers.
There are so many of them,
Coming and going,
Watching us, as we watch them.
We talk through the café noise
The waiter brings hot tea with lemon
And English muffins
As the afternoon ends
We are silent and wonder.

When we leave the restaurant
Even the late sunlight
Makes us squint and forget
How short a time until evening
When the bats fly.

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