As I was flying high and looking down
   the lonely regent of my tiny crown
in one-dimension’s cold and breath-thin air
   anxiously intent on prey down there

I’d had enough of limit’s lonely plains
   the flat dimensions where my kingdom reigns
the mumbled tastes and smells I’d feel and ‘see’
   within the fat of corporeality

and fed up with an empty stomach’s need
   of staying calm and poised in hunger/greed
of scouring earth and heaven for a feed
   and of the pumping species’ lust to breed

and being just the slight of something more
   the flight of fancy or the metaphor
of some small god or spirit I might be
   enbarbed into this bird-brained vanity

I craved a warmth and blood but not to eat
   I longed for solid earth and solid feet
the camaraderie of group and herd
   not the cramps of solitary bird

for squeezed within this single animal
   I felt my spirit growth was minimal
two forward eyes formed cross wires for one shot
   with single-minded thoughts towards that shot

no sense of ‘love’ towards my hunter kind
   just single thoughts within a single mind
no sense of multiple or larger heart
   just the calculating killer’s art

I held vestigial memories of ‘loves’
   but felt harsh hawk affinities to doves
I had ideas and knew compassion’s frame
   like empty victim bones without a name

my fuller heart’s desire for kindred flesh
   where individuality can mesh
with individuality and more
   was not a place I sensed my wings could soar

the levels I could climb felt limited
   and many planes are only passed when dead
and dead again one finds another plane
   and cleans the mind but still there’s matter’s stain

in ways predestined helpers have contrived
   I’m made aware of lives I have survived
I know there’s more to me than just one time
   that even birds can conscience the sublime

and while the air around me frictions heat
   my wings get heavier and cease to beat
I feel a future where my wings are feet
   and I jostle with thick-bodied meat

I feel the whole of me come down to earth
   a loss a fall – I wouldn’t call it birth
a drop through branches that I cannot stop
   the holding sense of present does not stop

my feathers shrink to single spines of hair
   now clumps of ear start sprouting where none were
what remains of talons grab on grass
   and swelling sinew atoms start to pass

through moon-spaced eyes to sea-ing skins of deer
   four-hoofed and heavy weighted hard to steer
a double helix seed in me unchains
   I’m galloping while tissue type constrains

fixed in muscle-stretching entropy
   pumping veins so big so odd so free
bumping into others without slipping
   we flood the plain our hooves are hardly gripping

ignoring fear retreating is no use
   wild and deer with freedom rushing loose
I stumble huddle gushing flushing flinging
   a streaming herd of steaming heart-beats winging


Damian Robin lives in England. He works for an international newspaper and a bilingual magazine. He lives with his wife and three children.

Feature Image: “Bewicks Swans” by Martin Ridley

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3 Responses

  1. Tengero

    Very impressive rhyme and meter in a descriptive piece
    of merit. Only needs the odd amendment to elevate it
    to ‘exceptional’. “Bird brain ” I would lose/change if possible? Excellent. Well done!

  2. NealD

    A truly thoughtful and thought provoking piece, it is beneficial to contemplate.


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