Bird’s Eye View

Anemic late-afternoon sunlight twists, chokes

through the rhododendron tanglewood

as you pull me upward.  Birdbone hand clasps

January-cold hand.  You crow about your

mountain crest, laced with gods, at odds with the sky.

This view will stagger, you promise.


I stagger to the top, panting, squinting, afraid

to open my eyes fully to an unforgivable vista,

spiked with arthritic, spindly trees.  Distant,

odd smoke stacks puff empty as promises

into a blanched sky.


My ashen breath comes in shallow, empty puffs.

You point, but I cannot hear you beneath dead spindles of air.

Tanglewood writhes upward; branches beckon like gods,

whispered promise of flight.  You clench tight;

my hand is cold beneath yours

and twisted as a crow claw.


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