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In the Hand, In the Bush

Startled by the thud of your body against the patio door,
I figure you have learned your lesson. Seconds later, you
approach again, leave specks of desperation on the glass.

You keep coming. Such commitment. Hours on end,
your body beats itself into oblivion and only my presence
on the porch deters. You rest on a branch, yet the moment

I leave, you fly again. Later I find you near dead, fallen
from the cottonwood sixty years high. I pick you up
with gloved hands, the curve of your back a handle

carved to fit my palm, smooth fulcrum of feathers ending
at your pointed beak, once happy with seed pods and twigs
but not sharp enough to crack the tempered pane. Yet here

you are, prying open the crusted lid of me, your body still,
my own forehead bruised from the persistent slap of the world.


Donna Vorreyer is the author of Every Love Story is an Apocalypse Story (Sundress Publications, 2016) and A House of Many Windows (Sundress Publications, 2013) as well as eight chapbooks, including The Girl (forthcoming from Porkbelly Press). She serves as the reviews editor for Stirring: A Literary Collection.


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