Look — A Poem

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“Shadow” — C.Birde, 3/19

 

Look

look away

cringe

fade…

To either side,

a tug,

a pull of

equal force.

Duality of need

desire

balanced

in opposition

to the self.

Uncertainty –

a slow poison

consumed

in sips;

a crumb

nibbled,

bitter

on the tongue.

Shadows,

all –

insubstantial;

substance-

less.

Trust —

within

lies the way.

Shimmer.

Blaze.

 

— C.Birde, 3/19

 

Threat, Part II — A Dream

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“Primaries” — C.Birde, 3/19

 

Why?

Why wouldn’t you listen?

Why couldn’t you?

Ever?

Despite threat and

warning,

you succumbed

to temptation.

To the rattle and call –

so strong,

too strong –

of that small, dull, charcoal-dark sphere.

It sang

for release and

you rolled it out

from its glass-walled

confinement

against your palm –

too thin,

too warm,

so unprotected.

Your skin absorbed

melting shadow,

while the two

at your shoulder –

foolhardy and

eager –

huddled and

watched.

And I?

I ran.

Unwilling

to witness

your transformation,

your de-

humanization.

I ran.

From the room,

the derelict house.

Down the hillside.

Toward the sea.

I dove

into hummocked,

grassy turf.

Myself,

now changed

shrunken,

diminished,

miniaturized.

I ran…

   scurried,

      rushed,

         hurried.

Through networked

earthen tunnels –

ducking lace-fringed

grassy roots –

that looped

and dipped

and dove

and curved

through endless

coils of earth.

I ran –

scampered,

hurtled

expanded

the distance between

myself and

you

until the tunnel

ended…

in an knothole

opened

in the subfloor

beneath

a battered kitchen cabinet.

Sealed cabinet doors,

defined by a slim seam

of vertical light.

A push,

and out I tumble

onto worn linoleum tiles

and dim-lit kitchen;

my former self and

size restored.

For naught.

For naught.

You

are here,

have anticipated

my time and place of arrival.

You crouch

at the cramped kitchen’s

perimeter.

You

and your two friends.

Changed, now –

one red, one yellow;

you, blue.

Your humanity

lost

(as predicted)

to right angles

and jointed,

flattened planes.

Your serrated teeth

gnash in cruel grins.

(As warned.)

Your laughter barks,

humorless.

(As feared.)

You wouldn’t

listen.

You never

did.

Surrounded,

now.

No escape.

We

are

lost.

 

— C.Birde, 3/19

 

 

Quickening — A Poem

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“Quickening” — C.Birde, 3/19

 

Long awaited.

Realized,

recognized

– at last –

in quickening

earth

(beat & breath of loamy

heart),

resurgent

song

(trill & tremor in airborne

throats),

in bud and flower

and greening

leaf

(stretch & shift toward expanding

light).

Spring arrives

– gift-wrapped –

on our

doorsteps.

Compose your

thank-yous accordingly.

Address them

to each

blushing hour,

each mischief curl

of breeze.

— C.Birde, 3/19

 

 

 

Threat — A Dream

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“Threat” — C.Birde, 3/19

 

I know.

It’s tempting.

That small, dull, charcoal-dark sphere,

contained

within that slim glass vial —

a piece

of shadow

trapped and capped.

So curious…

So seemingly

harmless.

Please.

Trust me.

I beg you.

Don’t open the vial.

You misunderstand —

I am not the threat.

It is.

Released,

it will change —

flatten…thin…spread…

and seep into your skin…

Change you.

Unmake you.

Into something

unrecognizable.

Un-human.

Inhuman.

Huge and heartless

with cruelty tucked

in your laughter

and a grin

full of hungry

teeth.

Please.

Please

Just don’t…

For you sake…

For mine…

For ours…

You never

would

listen

to me…

 

 

— C.Birde, 3/19

Confession — A Truth

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“Empty” — C.Birde, 3/19

 

Inward turning…my personal weather, a stillness, a vacuum…the “doldrums” (nautical term, describing an equatorial region of the Atlantic Ocean, marked by still air, sudden storms,  unpredictable winds). I prefer the earth beneath my feet, certainty… Adrift, all the same… The sensation manifests — in a shortness of breath, a faint lack of oxygen; as a heaviness in my gut. I am not unhappy, no. Unfocused, yes; “at sea”, so it seems. A pattern. Free of resistance, denial, struggle, I sit in its company, as if with someone I’ve known. Too long. A lifetime. We occupy shared space, absent of dialogue. Lonely, but comfortable. And then — interruption. Gwynnie leaps into my lap (open invitation to any cat). Her purr, a revelation. Her hard little head (thrust against my chin) confirmation of here, now. Physical reminder, in all her warm, fuzzy critterness — slack sails will fill and stir; the compass, reorient… Spring, too, will leap unexpectedly. (As a cat.) Woodland trails will call…chipmunks, uncurl from  nests…birdsong, inscribe the pulsing air… Reminder that I will feel — again, soon — the quick green tremble of everything. And this immersion — so imminent — this reconnection, and close observation will feed, refuel: body, mind, spirit. Creative well. Whole.

A lot to lay on a season, but Spring can take it.

 

— C.Birde, 3/19