The way the world intervenes, catching us
each time unprepared. The cranes stop off
for a few months, like constellations appearing,
except if the stars arrived each year
in fewer numbers, with more not bothering
the long trip from Canada to the campus
where my wife marks essays on long Saturdays.
They descend through the empty atrium,
stalking the open halls like alien schoolchildren.
In her dark classroom, she works by just a lamp
and what February light that makes it through
the bulletproof glass. The way once,
she was startled by a knock at the door,
and found one outside, impatient for her to invite it in
from some strange and other world.