Angels talk to him,
rub their wings together like crickets.
They all speak at once, give him
contradict themselves, urge
him to douse the flame
after striking the match. Sulfur
scorches his fingertips.
One voice breaks through,
floods his brain with instructions.
He is Pegasus, his sheath
of thunderbolts full, heavy.
He scampers up the fire escape,
hauls his slight frame onto the roof
of his twelve-story apartment building,
perches on the edge. January snow
settles on his worn flannel shirt, brushes
his face like the caress of angels’ hair.
He spreads his wings and flies into the starless
night. A feather drifts to the ground.
NINA BENNETT is the author of Forgotten Tears: A Grandmother’s Journey Through Grief. Her poetry has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies including Red Poppy Review, Houseboat, San Pedro River Review, Bryant Literary Review, Yale Journal for Humanities in Medicine, The Broadkill Review, and American Society: What Poets See. Her poem “Déjà Vu” took third place in the 2012 Out & About Magazine contest.