The Colonie landfill towers above
the roadway along the last run
of the Mohawk River before it drops
with a roar into the Hudson.
It stands as a sandy, ever-growing
monument to modern excess.
When the wind blows across
the mountain of detritus,
scraps of loose paper scud
across the face of the erstwhile dump
like streaks of snow caress
Mt. Everest’s icy profile.
But today the scraps of white
and gray seem to be holding
and folding in a position
above the man-made mound of jetsam.
Flocks of misplaced gulls,
peppered with scores of crows,
have succeeded in confusing my eyes
as they swoop and circle
in a trash-picking murmuration
even the starlings fear to join.
Along the road I see more crows
moping in the autumn-emptied
maples and birches, their wings
tucked in shrugs, waiting for
the trucks to deliver their
next meal. Maybe it’ll be pizza, or
at least the pizza crust within
the flat cardboard box that always
flies off the back and takes wing
with the rest of our flocks
in the shadow of Gull Mountain.