Bird

As when we awaken startled from a long, dank sleep

and realize that what we thought was love

was not love was not even the hollow kindness we show

a neighbor five doors down when we say “so sorry for your loss”

and think we can leave it at that was not even

a “there, there” we offer a friend of a friend whose husband

took up with a slinky redhead was not even the feigned

pity we show towards a second cousin once removed

who tells a cousin on our mother’s side about her stepbrother

who fell down two flights of stairs, broke his neck, and left behind

an ample wife was never even like

the small gasp that leaves our lips when through a car window

we see a blur of black bird with an injured wing

hop helpless in the gravel.

Image credit

 

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