Sunday, September 28, 2014


In the clutch,
a stone--
dense as a widow's heart.

The stone
is an un-bird,
cursed nonetheless with a damned restlessness.

through the bottom of the nest,
it takes the whole thing down,

end over disintegrating end
like the Creation Wheel gone graveyard.

Sister murderer,
brother destroyer,
be born into dirt, burrow and grow blinder.

Mother was stoic
and tossed a rose without a tear,
but went home with a hawk in her hair.

She tore at it,
banging her head and rocking to get rid of it,
sitting alone in the hallway to the kitchen, screeching.

Ah well,
this stone is like all the rest,
inside her, a clutch, cracking, then demanding everything--

bald, sightless
helpless boiling monsters
with their black holes open, perversely alive, impossible to satisfy.

for Play it Again at Real Toads. I used Ella's visualization prompt. I saw a hawk with its wings spread.


my heart's love songs said...

this gave me shivers at the end...

i've never heard Concrete Blonde. really like the song, too.

Gillena Cox said...

very dark, very well crafted;

have a nice Sunday

much love...

hedgewitch said...

I have only been through this once, so I know I am not fully equipped to comment, but my god, Shay--what a fine fine poem. There is absolutely no one out there who can write this blood-dark poetry of the mind and heart torn and in conflict, of life and loss and damage, like you do. Every image is like a glittering tile in an ancient mosaic, a heart-rune, a work of art, that pieces together a greater(and somewhat terrifying) whole.

My hair is *never* going to grow out at this rate.

Marian said...

cool, Shay. my kids were telling me that dodo birds ate rocks, & somehow this feels as heavy.

Margaret said...

..madness spiraling downward in utter abandon. Quite chilling

Björn Rudberg said...

To have a hawk entangled in your hair.. What an absolutely scary image of madness...

Björn Rudberg said...

To have a hawk entangled in your hair.. What an absolutely scary image of madness...

Cloudia said...

so many good bits I could quote them all. Yes, a stone is the anti-bird: sinks, rather than flying
might even end a bird. . . . .

Glad you are synthesizing the pain and so processing it.

ALOHA from Honolulu
=^..^= . <3 . >< } } (°>

Ella said...

My spine tingles! A hawk-huh!
Your medicine is powerful today~
Your heightened awareness will receive a gift! Hawk flies close to Grandfather Sun-so do you!

Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil said...

The stone as an "un-bird," your line, "dense as a widow's heart," there is so much to love and to be led by in this poem. I was led to a dark place... the mother casually tossing the rose, then coming home with a hawk in her hair! And unraveling from there... haunting music, haunting poem. You did great work here, Shay. Sorry I haven't been around, long story. Amy

Kerry O'Connor said...

This is such a powerful piece - the images seem to lend themselves to archetypal characters and the scenario is quite unsettling in the underlying sense of conflict.

Mama Zen said...

This is wild!

Hannah said...

Love the spiraling stanza...great one, FB!

R.K. Garon said...

Whoa! You did it again! Scared the B'jesus out of me. You write so well that I don't now whether to like you or not... just being silly. I do enjoy your work :-)

Mr Puddy said...

Is dis Game of the throne ?...tee...heh

Outlawyer said...

A very powerful poem, Shay, with an Anne Sexton-like quality, intensity--very strong, nothing arbitrary, vivid, visual. K. (Manicddaily)

Susie Clevenger said...

Wow! The visuals you create are frighting and vivid. Amazing

Grandmother (Mary) said...

You use such primal images and make us look them in the eye, pay attention and be instructed. Powerful.

Kathryn Dyche Dechairo said...

delicious in all its darkness, the visuals you conjure are stunning.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

The hawk in the hair and the headbanging and shrieking is a visual image I cant get out of my head. Fantastic writing, Shay. And the stone as an un-bird - as Amy notes - just brilliant.

Sara said...

To be honest, this felt like a written dream and I was caught in the words, but they were scary.

My favorite stanza was this one:
end over disintegrating end
like the Creation Wheel gone graveyard"

I couldn't tell you why this stanza jumped out at me, but it did:~)

Like others, I also loved the
"The stone
is an un-bird..."

Regarding seeing a hawk, I looked it in my animal medicine cards, here's one of the messages: "When the hawk shows up in your life, be receptive to your own intuition." :~)