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March Mascot: Joyce Brinkman

March 20, 2011

After Poet Laureati, Joyce Brinkman, poet laureate emeritus of Indiana, wrote this poem about her experience and flight home.

March Mascot


Like a shiny gray bullet

Delta Flight 1890 speeds

along the runway, while

across a brown band of ground

above a parallel landing strip

a Kansas City hawk appears

to race the plane. Black-

kissed wing-tips dip and

lift as the raptor’s regal head

cuts into the air ahead.


When the weighty mechanical

bird takes flight, the hawk lowers

its dark tail-feathers to settle

on the lane of natural turf

between the two hardened

surfaces of white. Standing

erect, its soft white underbelly

ripples in wind currents and

lightens in the eastern sun.


After taking off with this avian

escort, it will be harder to root

against the Kansas Jayhawks.


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