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Saturday, January 29, 2005

THE PRAYER BIRDS by Jake Berry 

What the Caliphate left undone
stumbles naked out the mosque.
A great Mouth
opens in the wires,
roars down the ruined streets,
populates the cafes
with massive grotesque angels
the color of an exploded chest
or a face half torn away –
the color of shattered skull
and exposed brain
spread across their sullen wings.
They are the voice embodied,
vulture proof
of a promise delivered.

On this cold day in Alabama
I feel the brush of their feathers
against my face
and study the swollen moss
and the bare overhanging limbs
leaved only by wrens
and a bright red cardinal
falling to the damp ground
to feed
on the seed I spread.

Jake Berry 1.29.05

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