I remember when we played wild rounds of Dutch Blitz
till milking time. But now no one owns a cow,
the young rarely come, and when they do, they leave
after lunch. This year we gather at a state park
in Indianapolis. Instead of dealing cards, cousins pass
cell phones with photographs and talk about gall stones
and Uncle Ervie’s glass eye. Half asleep, I wander off
toward the Nature Center that displays a mastodon tooth
and a gray bird with eyes ringed in red. The notecard
says he’s a passenger pigeon. He traveled with others
in clouds so thick they’d darken the sky and make a ruckus
loud as Niagara Falls. When their flocks were shot to pieces,
the scattered birds didn’t have a clue how to live alone.
The last one, Martha, died in the Cincinnati Zoo. Maybe
I’ll see her at next year’s reunion.