He knew he wasn’t like the parakeets in the guinep tree or the egrets in the mangrove or like the bridge where the river dirtied the sea, at breakwater. He knew how to stay on the ground. His rum cup in one hand, the other pressed over his lips, he swayed on the piazza, whistling through his fingers the bananaquit song. He had loved a brown-skin wife who kissed him at the airport, said she would see him in three months. He rode the crowded bus home, his mind resting on the empty sea. Eighteen years passed, her kiss he still could remember. His fingers over his lips, he honoured the birds, wishing to be free, to be able to feel his wife’s lips on his lips. If he could he would soar to Canada and perch on her windowsill. Chirping the bananaquit song, hoping she would remember the green fields of his love and the bridge above the mangrove bush where the egrets sleep, where they made their first child. After twenty-five years waiting. His voice grew hoarse. The bananaquit song faded. The shopkeeper placed a plaque, the colour of parakeets, on the piazza wall, which greeted the pink-edged eyes of his aged wife,
In fond memory of The Birdman.