Today's poem is by Sean Serrell

Rorschach on Pond

By the time I floated past the heron, the flies
had come and gone. What remained, suspended,
were the hard parts: split milky quills and bones
bleached to fracture, ridged and rigid trachea,

the scalpel keel. Nylon conniptions lashed
the bird to its inborn pose of vigilance
and hunger: still-hunting: its last vision
was possibly a fish: underneath, out of reach.

My first thoughts were marionette, mobile,
caltrop—if I'd tried to free it, the grained bill
and bones would have stabbed me and splintered:
resisted as if something in that stillness was
worth defending, now that the vigil was over.

Copyright © 2004 Sean Serrell All rights reserved
from West Branch
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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