I have seen her many times, now,
from March’s thaw to the heat of July.
She walks alone, even in a crowd.
None approach her, none jostle.
Her apparent path is always clear.
Is it by chance, dumb luck, coincidence?
Glances that wander to her
are as quickly turned away.
And she glides….to what business?
I am drawn,
and so I seek her suspected haunts.
Some days pass, then weeks.
She comes not, as if divining my intentions.
On a grey day I round the corner,
laden with grocery bags.
There, on the smokers’ bench,
Several sparrows, a cardinal, and chickadees
flutter and settle next to her.
Long straight blondeness obscures her profile
as she studies her hands, palms up, on her tan legs.
A chickadee settles in one, and peeps.
Stunned, I stop and set down my bags.
Tongue tied, I ask if she is alright,
expecting perhaps a belligerent reply.
She turns her long head, and I see
the pools of her eyes. Inscrutable.
There is no smile, but a gesture for me to sit.
In silence are we.
What will I say to this creature?
I ask her name.
Call me Sarah, she says, without an accent,
and the words seem to invade memory and stay.
Where do you live, I say.
She stands, tugs me upright by the hand.
The sun now comes of a sudden.
She tilts her head back, smiles finally with closed eyes.
Of a star, she says,
and I believe.