Gardener at Heart - Book One

City Crow


Within his black cloak

lurk rainbows of color

That gleam and shift as he bends

to peck apart the intricacies

of a dead lunch, dashed

down by feckless hands—

look out!—here comes a dog.

Burnished wings unfurl,

grant to ears that wild sound:

feathers gripping the air;

black claws click on top of a sign (NO LOITERING).

The human hurries, heedless,

pulls the scavenger nose away 

toward that ordained place and time

always just ahead.


A shining eye observes

an ally glide and swoop,

alight, approach,

invert the prize with glossy beak,

pin it with dexterous feet, extricate a vital morsel.

The observer lifts his sable epaulets,

brandishes his beak,

bells out an exuberant message.

He takes to the dingy air,

slides a glissando over downbent heads,

trailing a fulgent cloak—

sparks of light and wind.


Why does he remain

in these perilous canyons?

Above the persistent scruff of weeds

at the foot of the sign (NO LOITERING),

he sings on,

an undeciphered voice.


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