The Geometry of Birdland by Karla Linn Merrifield

You dream you would hammer

your scorn into perfect circles

from on high like the iron wheels

of a predatory night hawk.

You would prey on any

isosceles triangle within grip,

rip it into angles of judgment

as acute as a golden eagle’s cocked eye.

Your shadow would be as a vulture’s

mean and dirty parallelogram

in the raw morning sky.


But, you wake instead,

the spoiled caged cockatoo,

clip-winged, inside a square

of domesticity

on a low bamboo perch

of limited horizons,

squawking white with resentment.


Life did not let you fly

into wild cones of power.


Karla Linn Merrifield, a nine-time Pushcart-Prize nominee and National Park Artist-in-Residence, has had 600+ poems appear in dozens of journals and anthologies. She has 12 books to her credit, the newest of which is Bunchberries, More Poems of Canada, a sequel toGodwit:  Poems of Canada (FootHills), which received the Eiseman Award for Poetry. Forthcoming this fall is Psyche’s Scroll, a full-length poem, published by The Poetry Box Selects. She is assistant editor and poetry book reviewer for The Centrifugal Eye. Visit her blog, Vagabond Poe Redux, at Google her name to learn more; Tweet @LinnMerrifiel;



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