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Once, and only once,
I felt a swift beauty–
A flutter, a whisper of wing
Against my bare arm.
I sat alone, encircled
By sunshine and cigar,
The beating of wing upon skin
And the bird, no bigger
Than a honey bee, a butterfly–
A hummingbird mistaken of me,
As I of him.
He danced, suspended,
Hovered over white petunias
Like spirit, or all of spirit
I wanted to know:
No maxims, no morals,
Only something as profound
As God, as miraculous,
As if he’d spoken,
Or moved the pencil
I’d dared him to move.
I sat for a while, still,
Hoping he would come again.
He didn’t.
Because that’s life, isn’t it?
An eternal flight of song–
A brief touch of this or that thing,
Sacred moments–
Out of our control.

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