The Bastard Wing

This is what the things can teach us: to fall, patiently to trust
our heaviness. Even a bird has to do that before he can fly.
― Rainer Maria Rilke

The sky is blue with clouds. Yes, it takes a long time
Not to see this. It takes until the crow is not too close
And close enough to see the bulging eye, the violet in her
Slow blink lid. Three crows circle her, then go
Leaving me alone. I scour the bald beach and the blank air
For anything else compatible with crow.
The sea glitters. What do you suffer with?

He told me once, combing the bladder wrack together,
Train your eye to curve, to cut cross-wise.
That’s how we’ll find what we’re after. The treasure.

Sometimes light hides more than darkness does.
In the high trees the air strains
At the violation of a crow’s wing,
The wing da Vinci figured would usher
Umpteen glistening machines.
She is skywardness stopped dead
By a kite string stretched between the shore pines.
Sky drowning in sky. Hanging by a bone-thread.

A world of purchase lies at her twisting bird-feet,
But air is become the altar and the anvil.

Alula! the bastard wing,
Black cap of the executioner,
Black flag of refusal to surrender,
Wings turned in
To rotor blades, oars, a winnowing fork.
Something better becoming
The colour of bitumen, on the point of being
Dismembered. Every angle of attack, every outburst
Knifing the ether, tightens the string.

The wind drops from the windsock.
The air has turned to stone.
A fine line, birdwreck,
comes between caught and free.

Frantic, she swings
From her skyhook,
Sky-hooked.

And the day takes the weight of it,
Knowing things fall from above.
And when she does, I have to
Tease out string from talon.
Touching this is barely more than empty

………….But when
The heart revives it has a lot to prove—

A crow stares out of the biting wind
………….A belief in love that will not
Be made
……………………Nothing of.

Cally Conan-Davies

Cally Conan-Davies

Cally Conan-Davies is a writer who lives by the sea.
Cally Conan-Davies

Latest posts by Cally Conan-Davies (see all)

Author: Cally Conan-Davies

Cally Conan-Davies is a writer who lives by the sea.