STILL LIFE WITH DEAD BIRD
"Little Sister!" he cried out. "Thank you for guiding us here. Thank you for taking care of us all this way. Wherever we go we will remember your kindness. We shall wear your feathers when you give them to us. We will hold your people in regard and tell our people always to treat you well…" The Flicker flew up into the air, flashing the gold beneath her wings one last time, and then flew back into the forest. —Ted Andrews
I found a rare yellow shafted flicker
arranged on my doorstep,
perhaps it was a thoughtful gift
from the neighborhood cats,
perhaps not, but it was so beautiful
nestled in that blue woven rag rug,
I couldn't bear to let it go, or bury it.
I took photos of it, I drew it,
and called it Still Life with Dead Bird.
I kept that bird deep in my freezer,
wrapped in tinfoil and night.
And whenever I needed solace
I took it out of the freezer
to admire its golden beauty.
It shone like sunrise, I kept it on ice
for decades, in a cabin I later abandoned,
along with the interrupted dreams of a writer's life.
I wonder what the neighbors thought
when they found it covered with hoarfrost?
I found a rare yellow shafted flicker on my doorstep, perhaps a gift from the neighborhood the cats, perhaps not, but it was so beautiful I took many photos of it, still life with dead bird. I kept it in my freezer, in a cabin I abandoned, I wonder what the neighbors thought?