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Poet's Choice

when I got home. From the kitchen I saw

blood, the black feathers scattered

on snow. How the bird bent

to each skein of flesh, his muscles

tacking to the strain and tear.

The fierceness of it, the nonchalance.

Silence took the yard, so usually

restless with every call or quarrel,

titmouse, chickadee, drab

and gorgeous finch, and the sparrow haunted

by her small complete surrender

to a fear of anything. I didn't know

how to look at it. How to stand

or take a breath in the hawk's bite


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