BIRD FEET by William Winfield Wright

If I had bird feet
everything would be different.
I’d start paying attention
to where I put myself,
lifting the knees like they say,
going without shoes, leaving tracks.
I’d become comfortable in public conversation.
“No, actually. I just woke up one day
and there they were
looking up at me from the bottom of the bed.”
My strangeness would mark the date
when others learned that they were strange.
“OK, yeah, bird feet, but I got to thinking
my dad smoked in the shower.”
Maybe there’d be books, Instead of Wings,
a documentary of This Life on a Wire,
or some practical science work in acclimating cranes
and leading sandpipers away from oil slicks.
Those dreams of transformation,
the process of getting used to something,
one might become the other
if I had bird feet.
I’d finally learn to stand still
or run efficiently from oncoming water.