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Gray Cheek

September 12, 2008

She leans toward me.
Wings clipped, she is endangered
in a different way — leans so strongly
I am afraid she may topple, thud to the floor.

Last week, on my usual walk along the beach,
I saw the back of a man who sat on a bench above,
almost a dozen birds arrayed on the rail behind him.
Undoubtedly, the man must have had crumbs. Undoubtedly,
there must have been a phalanx of birds I couldn’t see
parading around his feet, feeding his hunger.

I am not the person who feeds my daughter’s bird.
Yet the bird craves me with an inexplicable love.
She has forgotten flight, the green forest, monkey chatter,
the rush of crystal cascades through mossy crevices — longs now
for motor rides, for melting ice cream sipped from a spoon.
I think she is considering how she can speak to me
in my language. She dreams of my shoulder,
of thrusting her feathered head
snugly into the hollow behind my ear.

I dream of growing wings.

by Marjorie Stamm Rosenfeld

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  1. September 12, 2008 at 5:05 pm

    Lovely; touching and vivid…

  2. September 14, 2008 at 7:35 am

    Wonderful, poignant poem Marjorie. I especially love:

    “I think she is considering how she can speak to me
    in my language.”

  3. September 15, 2008 at 11:27 pm

    Simply amazing and well written! I can’t simply pick out which lines are my favorite!! It’s a lovely way to express how sometimes mankind wishes to fly!

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