Wednesday, April 19, 2006

We, the Jury

These birds, and their unaccustomed silence,
peering with their inscrutable eyes, and our
thoughts of science class and nictitating
membranes, and we become concerned with
things we’ve done in the past, as it seems
clear that these birds know each tender and
shameful secret of ours, drawing their
beaks across the aged surface of the split
rail fence as butchers draw their cleavers
across the whetstone, ruffling feathers
and sharing their disdain for us as the
sun falls closer to the horizon and the
sigh of the wind dies out, laying down
the dust, to rest for a moment as we
turn, turn back, and finally draw our
uneasy eyes from the avian jury, walking
to the corner and turning like men with
guns trained on them, knowing that
this walk ends in deeper shadows, and
another night spent alone in the hot
darkness, within easy reach of the
claw and tooth of our well documented


Bill said...

I;m not sure what this one has me feeling... like a lot of your work though, I really like the way you draw on the 'everyday' visual and paint a slightly skewed vision... one that always draws me in!

Firehawk said...


I think this one should make a person feel uneasy, as if he looked up and the steady flow of moments had skipped in its track. A lot of this stuff is sort of like, "thoughts I didn't quite think at the time," you know?

Thanks for coming over.

MB said...

"thoughts I didn't quite think at the time


The avian jury is quite a concept. And the poem does communicate uneasiness. Almost as if the surface of reality were rippling.

Firehawk said...


Aren't most poems little recollections, recasting emotions we didn't quite know how to feel when things first happened?

I thought that a jury of birds would be a strange and disquieting thing, all their hard eyes shining in the moonlight...

MB said...

Yes, they are, they do. And it is, it does!

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