Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Rufous-Sided Towhee

When the beast myself, driven by hungers
Created by parasitic words caught
From the deep, fungal cave art of writing,

Roams for days away from green anything,
Labyrinthine nights bizarre with torchlight,
And deep into heaped imperfections

Of similarly infected creatures
Glowing like transparent fish with monsters
Of phosphorescence accumulated

Behind blank, flat eyes and laboring gills
Or, like those eusocial sisters, tricked ants
Standing on hind limbs from twig ends of trees

With pale grey, fruiting bodies throwing spores
From their possessed heads, nerves, and antennae
Into the wind so that some dreams survive,

I wake up in a foreign cavern, bright
With the precisely delineated
Memories of songs truly without words,

Without words even behind the making
Or theory of the nonsense that they trill.
First comes their rasp, like the squawk of a jay,

That always fools me, then the sweet outburst
Of a melody so fragmentary
That my beastly heart snatches after it

Too hard. The other beast, waking in me,
Ready to shed spores from my nodding head,
Claws at thought. What is the name of that bird?

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