Today's poem is by C.J. Sage

Self-Portrait as a Bluebird's Open Beak

No blue at all
But the tenderly flat
face, the breath

was held so long;
the bird is absent,
the beak is doubled

open, the subject—
you can see right
down its throat—

is absent—is like ceramic
(you can see it has been
broken, has been

glued back up together),
is just. Because
blue is everywhere


The blue is everywhere,
is in the skin,
is in the waterfront

house, the bird
of brick and mortar,
the sky, it rests on top,

laid down; the roof—
blue tiles in wavelike
patterns—which heaves it all,

goes absent, goes
head to heels; it falls
around the ankles—

the feet are blue
paint peeling off
to expose the body's reef.


The body's reef is blue,
the hidden blood floats little
fish, they kiss the coral

muscles, they are foragers
of blue, their bodies bruise
blue, the waves

press them up
into the mouths of blue
whales, the bones the ribs,

bounding, boomeranged,
are swallowed, blue
undertow that spits them out

again—if they are birdlike-lucky,
if they are quick and shifty,
if their scales do not weigh.

Copyright © 2012 C.J. Sage All rights reserved
from The Literary Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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