Crescent Moon (or, To a Friend)

By Daniel Egitto

I know it is so cold up there

so deep inside your night

but when you smile for us, soft and silent,

it’s easy not to see how fast you’re waning.

I know it’s all empty, there—

no air, no earth to walk on—

and in your sky it is so dark I know

you must be freezing.

Know, we are watching you here below.

Know that we have so many things to tell you.

How many times have we, little birds,

tried to fly up to you, tweeting, tweeting—

but you are so far

too far to hear us.

Our air is too thin to fly to you

and we, poor birds, can’t see in the night.

And so we are left here, tweeting, tweeting

and you are left there, so far away.

If only you’d come closer, one of these mornings

before you wane away

you would hear us

and the songs we sing from our branches.

We are singing the earth’s song

bright and living

and we sing and we sing and sing and sing—

if only you could hear us.

We are singing of our branches

and the wind that teases them

and of the raindrops

and the way they splash our wings

and of the sunlight and the rivers

and the leaves the breezes gather

and of joy and pain and gladness and hurt

and looking and tasting and touching and breathing

and feeling

we sing of our air

and our leaves all red and orange-yellow

and of the branches, black, they leave behind—

we are singing the day-song

and we sing and sing it louder—

but you are the moon, and you are so far away