Raven

I curl up inside her,

the black feathers an oily down,

her paranoid eye

guarding me, for I am small

and cannot speak

her heart’s rhythm a hum against my body

 

but the oil—

catching me, keeping me

like the tar of forgotten marshes, sinews

of rotten muscle and limb,

stretching my weak wings

out of instinct

to be caught and snapped back

my terror

a silent humiliation

and so I shrink towards her ribs;

 

it’s okay to be caged

when you’re reminded how

small you are,

how little your voice is.

 

She shrills a grating melody and

I mimic her quietly,

falling into restless sleeps

so many sleeps

I have aged

I can feel it in my weakened wings,

see it in my crippled clutch

 

I have gone unnoticed

yet

necessary

to her.

 

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4 thoughts on “Raven

  1. What a perfect trope, turning the bird cage into being caged in a raven’s ribs. Is the raven our nature, or are we possessed by nature far more than anyone cares to admit? There’s a certain distant tone of love here – perhaps its weary acceptance — not quite sympathizing with the aggressor but akin to that, maybe accepting the other as necessary to the coherence of a defining tandem. Final stanza reminds me of what the Stranger told the Dude in “The Big Lebowksi: — Sometimes you eat the bar, and sometimes the bar eats you. The poem sometimes eats us.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ultimately you found a protector and that’s important. The raven watching over one so small and helpless stirs something sad and familiar. Thanks, A Glad Amy (anagram for amygdala) love mosk

    Liked by 1 person

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