WRITING ABOUT BIRDS ON THE ANNIVERSARY OF YOUR DEATH
Someone said, once, a robin held silent vigil next to her feather-bare baby on a busy road. Stood
dumb-shocked near the dead hatchling, knocked from the nest
with no wings to catch wind. Dull-eyed feathered thing standing still, not moving
for cars, not moving—tell me she’s too dim-witted to feel, suddenly, loss;
to suddenly lose and know it. Tell me she can’t know it. Tell me there’s still hollow hope that one
living thing can dodge heart-hurt of quick, cruel dying.
Don’t let the dense bird know it. Because if she can
because if she can
if she can,
what does that mean for me.
HOW TO LEAVE A CHICAGO PUB AFTER A PANIC ATTACK AROUND 11 AM
You take your tame body and the tight fist of grief
and you just walk out.
You allow the steel-cold sky to propel you east
toward the lake, full of rusted ship bones
and fish with human teeth.
You take your very breakable body away,
long bones, ligaments, and all the wet blood, unsteady.
Remember, blooms of your ancestors fell from branches,
soaked the air with rotten-sweetness.
You feel death on your tongue meat,
the spot reserved for sugar.
You teach your body to go,
a congress of starlings flaring from tree-tops.
Erica Anderson-Senter lives and writes in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Pieces have appeared in Midwestern Gothic, Tinderbox Poetry Journal, and Crab Fat Magazine. Her chapbook, seven days now, was published by The Dandelion Review. Erica hosts free literary events throughout her city to bring art to the public. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing through the Writing Seminars at Bennington College in Bennington, Vermont.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.