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May 2014
I am not a sparrow
whose wings flap in perfect form,
whose voice is pure, delicate and soft,
who sings rondeaux to the shining morning.

I’m no nightingale either,
who guides through ink-soaked nights,
who warbles a mourning lay to the shadows,
who beckons with a bone-white feather draped over hollow nerves.

In fact, I cannot fly at all.
There’s always been this crippling
fear of falling, failing, drowning, etc.,
that’s kept me firmly on solid ground.

I am not grace,
that ease my mother named me for,
that Princess my dad always assumed she’d meant
that prayer whispered by hungry throats on Christmas Day.

I think I’m closer to an ostrich—
tripping, dancing on legs too spindly
to balance the feathered majesty
above, dashing farcically from lions.

But not quite.
I am not quite Me.
She would be a sledgehammer, indestructible.
She would have a voice that rang like steel falling heavy on iron.

And She would be painted yellow—
like a finch, or a canary.
Written by
featherfingers  swpa
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