Kite Poem

Listen to Joyce Carol Oates reading this poem. For Billy Collins

thing there
is in the American
soul that soars with
kites that soar! Some-
thing alive with the roar
of the wind lifting the kite
that soars above rooftops, tree-
tops, and awestruck heads! And yet—
Something there is not in the
American soul to adore the
kite that fails to soar.
I’ve seen it, I’ve
feared it, and
so have you.

The kite whose tail
is tattered in the
TV antenna.
The kite that rises
at dawn
then crashes
at your feet.

in a