Gulls – J. Thomas Burke

We unpack under pillars
of clouds. Squawks
from strange birds lift
our heads—New Orleans,
a home caressed by breeze, cooled
by sweat
and promise.

Outside at long rows
of plastic church festival tables,
you eat alligator
sausage, I the golden
fried shrimp. The beer
pours sweet
as the tea.

White gulls, distant
sails of southern sky,
drift, calling,
calling, dive.

J. Thomas BurkeThomas Burke is an MFA student studying poetry in the Creative Writing Workshop at the University of New Orleans where he is also a poetry reader for the literary journal, Bayou Magazine, and a judge for the Tennessee Williams Festival’s poetry and one-act play contests. His work has most recently appeared in the literary and arts journal Quercus.