This entry is part 17 of 73 in the series Morning Porch Poems: Winter 2011-12


This verb cannot be reflexive.

But there on the springhouse roof is a thing
fluffing out its feathers, probing under its wings.

Little promise of flight,
ascending and leaving behind—

The verb is not reflexive.
In many languages, the reflexive is rendered
by the transitive verb followed by a reflexive
pronoun +self e.g. “She threw herself
on the bed.” or “Weeping, she threw
herself on the ground.”

This verb is not reflexive.
It prays to be spared, but if that is not to be,
then it prays to be taken quickly.

I’m moved to get down on my knees.
I’m not even sure what is there.

But if you are, you know the heart
does not exist solely for the purpose
of pumping blood.


In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.

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