Saturday, November 23, 2013

Feathers of Earth

Before birds evolved,
most dinosaurs, it seems, had feathers. Some
were striped russet, like pheasant hens,
some had frills like peacock tails and some,
perhaps, neon-hued like parrots.
Meanwhile overhead, soaring pterosaurs and pterodactyls
were featherless, not naked,
covered in fine hair. So consider—

feathers garbed the kings of earth, the powerful predators
while kings of air went robed in fur. A hair
would stand for flight, the wind,
speed, freedom. Feathers were heavy
and dangerous, roaring from ambush
among the giant ferns, striding bloody-jawed
across savannahs. Fear went cloaked in feathers.
Hope was the thing with hair.

Hummingbirds hover at backyard feeders,
size of my thumb, spun-sugar bones
no thicker than threads. My cat watches, tail-tip atwitch.
Hair and feathers, still at war
but somehow, now, it’s upside-down.

Available! High-Voltage Lines, Knocking from Inside

1 comment:

Tabatha said...

Fun poem! "Hope was the thing with hair." :-)