by Moshe Wolf


The Hatchling questions what it is doing. Every breath is wind, worm, and twig. But somehow, against all odds, the Hatchling does more than make a note. Hatchling breathes the song of rain on a sunlit day. Hatchling learns the whispering words of Moonflower, the honey scent of Night Phlox, and the dance of the Four O’clock.

But Hatchling wants more. Hatchling learns alto sax, becomes nightclub worthy. Every night, crowds listen to low notes roll in the foghorn song of need and know and night. Every ear in the audience turns entranced, siren-drunk. They ask for Parker. Demand Cannonball. They say play Woods. Keep the day away. Make us cry; make us live. And Hatchling blasts love and blares the sound of abandon. Hatchling trumpets and trills until even the smoke knows the songs. Until every tune beats into wings. Until every pair of wings is wren and owl and gull and finch and raven.

But not me. No, never me. Go ahead, turn around. Swat the sound away, like one annoyed by a mosquito. Not because I am alone or not alone, not because I too am a hatchling, but because I am afraid to discover what grows at night, what moves between the notes.