Read Poem: EARTH LINKS: FLIGHT RISK by Gary Beck

POETRY FESTIVAL. Submit to site for FREE. Submit for actor performance. Submit poem to be made into film.

The birds of Bryant Park
do not live in cages,
though almost as confined
in midtown Manhattan,
since they don’t migrate
thanks to climate change,
deforestation,
excess concrete
smothering habitat.

They subsist on crumbs,
lunchtime leftovers
from local workers,
as there’s no regular
avian food supply
in this well-funded park,
that forbids feeding birds
because enterprising rats
claim their share of food.

The birds of Bryant Park
have a strange life cycle,
completely unnatural
despite genetic urge
ro reproduce in Spring
when food is abundant,
left by park visitors.

The sparrows and pigeons
dominate the food chain.
Sparrows fast, aggressive,
pigeons big, aggressive,
so warblers, catbirds,
other forest birds
without lodgings elsewhere,
can no longer compete
in the struggle for life.

But for several months
food is plentiful
for domineering birds
who reproduce like wild,
nourishing their young
with food snatched from beaks
of those who can’t resist.

Then the…

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