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Recorded for Poem-a-Day, December 13, 2017
About this Poem 
“I wrote ‘aria’ one day over the summer, after I’d sat in my living room at dusk with all the windows open. At the time I was living in Michigan, and darkness had fallen over the day, but outside these sparrows would not stop their movement or noise. I found myself trapped in their twittering, in a dream-like moment of paralysis. My mind was still active, but my body was giving into the slow unwind of the day. I wanted to tell those birds to quit, but I also wanted to still be flying about the world with them. This poem is about letting go of the things we cannot change, about rest and resilience. It’s about giving into the songs that transition us from one day to the next, so that we may sing and fight again tomorrow.”
—Mariama J. Lockington
 

aria

white-throat sparrows/full of note/netted in the eventide/voices
sawing the trees/fragile little bodies/tracing frantic circles
             not understanding/what we must all come to accept/not one day
                         will last/we must end ourselves/as gently as we can
             take our swords/our facts/oddments of feather
                         turn them into the dark/she takes us as we are
             windswept/awake with shattering & nothing
             is as loud as her arms pulling us
             close/not even these wings
             landing/forever
             in the nests of
             my ears

Copyright © 2017 by Mariama J. Lockington. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on December 13, 2017, by the Academy of American Poets.

Copyright © 2017 by Mariama J. Lockington. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on December 13, 2017, by the Academy of American Poets.

Mariama Lockington

Mariama J. Lockington

Mariama J. Lockington is the author of the poetry chapbook The Lucky Daughter (Damaged Goods Press, 2017), and her middle-grade novel in verse is forthcoming from Farrar, Straus and Giroux in 2019. Lockington is a nonprofit educator and currently lives in Lexington, Kentucky.