ON OTHER WINGS
Bold fiery crest; black bandit mask;
an iridescent cardinal fluff
of weightless heartbeat throbbing in my hand;
pin-pinching claws; and jerking, twisting bite;
and rage, red rage, in furious black eyes ...
defiant rage, out-rageous for your size ...
from what immeasurable reservoir of freedom-known
does your frail fledgling body draw and drink
the courage for such rage, such blazing rage?
No, now, brave bit-of-brightness: bite, but rest!
I cannot heal your hurt and set you free.
The cat ... I'm sorry ... set her teeth too deep,
too deep into your breast. You understand?
There. Nestle quietly in my hand.
Your first flight and your last ...
no, not your last!
Fly back, fierce warrior-spirit, to the vast ...
the vaster freedom of that kindlier sky
where neither birds nor men need wings to fly!