the bats

I still remember the bats.

I arrived back home one summer
exhausted from the journey,
shuffling through the day,
and when evening fell
and the light waned in the sky,
there was a shuffling overhead.

I went upstairs and sat on the balcony
overlooking the Aegean,
a thin strip of land in the distance
reminding me how close I was
to Greece, lights beginning
to appear across the water.

It was a peaceful moment
one I could not have replicated
without the weariness—
my thoughts were sluggish
my skin enjoying the warmth
of another Turkish summer.

Suddenly there was a flapping sound
just above me, and then another
and another, and I stood and watched
as leathery creatures took flight
from beneath the very eaves
of my otherwise quiet home.

More and more they appeared
dancing and bobbing overhead
weaving wildly amongst themselves
snatching at the intrepid insects
that arose in the dusk—
a feeding frenzy.

The second night I came prepared
to the balcony, camera in hand
ambitious to capture the moment,
but the weary light was unfriendly
and my efforts remained
quite pathetically unrewarded.

On the third night, I decided
to simply sit and watch
and enjoy an experience
that I knew would never come
back in Utah where I spent
the rest of the year.

But they had already grown
weary of rudely intrusive me,
and my patience brought
me nothing more than sight of that
thin strip of land across the water,
and lights that barely twinkled

as I quietly watched.

How I spent most of my time on that balcony.

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