The breath of the world blows tendrils of hair,
turns windmills and dries white sheets upon a line.
It twists into a tornado
and lifts a house off its foundations,
sets it down in a mountain meadow
where zephyrs stir the trees.
The breath of the world blows a bee from its branch,
inhales its pollen and puffs it into nostril hairs
that launch a hurricane of sneezes,
sending a whirlwind of powder
from a powdered sugar donut out the window
onto the shoulder of a passing immaculate black tuxedo.
The breath of the world launches sailboats,
then sends them into safe harbors as it swells into a typhoon.
As it exhales, it lifts kites high into the air
and as it inhales, sends them plummeting to earth.
It fuels our lungs to blast a wind of words: expletives or adamant prayers,
anthems or a tyrant’s raves, benedictions or cheers for a favorite football team.
Windy cities draw their nicknames from the breath of the world.
Wind in the Willows names our books.
Woodwinds breathe out melodies
Wind gives a name to our direction as we struggle windward.
Hurricanes quench our thirst in airless bars.
Breezes give monikers to our dispositions.
Whirlwind, breeze, zephyr,
hurricane, gale, draft, blow,
tornado, crosswind, cyclone—
from gentle puff to wild tornado,
it is the world’s breath
that sets everything into motion.
For the Fake Flamingo September Poetry Challenge hosted by Rebecca, which was to write a poem about the wind making use of anaphora (a repetition of lines.) Image of sheets in the wind by Jason Briscoe on Unsplash. All other images by me.