Journal of Writing & Environment

We sit on the roof

while the fireworks in the city

are red and weeping.


A few streets over

neighbors put on their own

display—loud pops


and the smoke layering

until it becomes a sheet

of fog, until the whiteness


lies on the sky like a bruise.

Something is there—

passing through the smoke.


I know they are bats

for how they do not glide.

They cut. But not like a knife


thrown violently,

hopefully, with much effort.

They heave a little up


and down with each push

of leathery wing.

Some are big


as shoes, others

like darts shooting through

the firework display.


In the smoke and fog

where the fire died,

they enter—at the center


of that very bright wound.