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Mother keening like banshee

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Dressed in white - noble blackbird-feather crown

to dainty shoes, her feet face southwest,

like standing stones overlooking this valley. I sit

beside her, should she wake. I halted

the hands of time to pay my respects Tuesday

evening. The night before I heard

the unearthly wail of a terrorised daughter

in mating rituals of cats or foxes,

or something other altogether. When I was young,

I stood at an open window, top

of a ruined castle, staring at the ground

where I’d smash my bones, leak a story

untold. A seagull screeched. I looked up into iridescent

sky, so blue it tinged limestone

walls pale azure, and I found I could not keep my eyes

from the bird etched against

this brightest light. Such are the ways she got to me.

Such are the ways she held me.

Such are the ways she let me embrace her too, fingers

in her nested hair, to hear

the dance of her annihilated language. Such are the ways

she tells us all

we could be river

smooch sea

            like whale


            like dolphin like albatross


             universal language

             one sky

             one ocean


             like swallow like butterfly


like rabbit




         like pig

                   it's got to be better than all of this


                                                        which is self-


we could be something

content as animals in muck





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