personal, poetry

Corvus Brachyrhynchos (American Crow)

You love your birds. We love them, too, you know;
your stunning pictures allow us to believe
in the forgotten world we can’t retrieve–
the one you captured in the Folio.
We’re far removed from birds these days. The crow
you shot and skewered with wires to achieve
a life-like “Mankin,” posed as you conceive
the Truth of Crows, is dead, removed. Although
once you were almost killed for nothing more
than your gold watch. But they got theirs, the crone
and her two sons, strung up by Regulators.
Thus you were saved to paint what you adore:
your birds, your marvelous birds, for educators
and public alike—you, the crow, alone.

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One thought on “Corvus Brachyrhynchos (American Crow)

  1. I wrote this for a class in grad school in the Spring of 2002. The assignment was to distill Robert Penn Warren’s sprawling poem “Audubon: A Vision” into the much smaller container of a sonnet. Perhaps I tried to fit too much in.

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