Monday, January 31, 2005

And When She Left She Bit Me

A young grackle fell into a pool of water.

A grackle,
her name not graceful 
as a raven 
or even as a crow.
Her slender legs were not long enough
to keep her head above the water.
And her wings did not help her swim.

Who knows how long
she struggled there.
The air around her
thick to breathe.

It was the gardener 
who lifted her out.
Poor as dirt.
Rich as soil.

And set her resting 
on the hibiscus plant.
Her claws were clinched into little fists
that hurt to even look at them.

She shuddered and shivered 
in the mug and heat 
of all of now what should save her.

It was the gardener's wife 
who tucked her into her shirt.
Against her breast.
Against her heart.Poor as dirt.
Rich as a gardener.
Plain as a wife.
As beautiful as a wife.

The slender legged grackle lay there.
As ugly as a drowned thing.
As beautiful as something saved.
Wild as a city bird.
Tame as the injured's hopeless.

And when she left.
She bit me.


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