The Crow Is A Knowing Thing

Magnificently black,

shining, preened clean

of the nonsense of sin, 

it sits and waits and watches. 

It is a knowing thing, the crow. 

It sees the lesser birds

and their busyness,

their toing and froing

with beaked worms and grubs

and slugs and bugs.

It knows their business, the crow,

and the lesser birds,

they know the crows.

They see her, the crow mother,

perched in the trees at first,

and then on the gutter, closer.

She sits and watches and waits,

patient, disinterested, aloof,

until the lesser bird flies

for one last time

in search of more food for her brood.

She has waited, the crow,

until these younglings

are fattened, and juicy

and ripe for the taking,

and now she takes it,

the biggest, the roundest,

the fattest ball of feather and down,

she lifts it out of the nest,

carries it as it frantically

flaps farewell in her

big, black, bloody beak

up to the gutter once more

and she pierces the chick

and she pierces the chick

and she pierces the chick

again and again and again

until it is no longer offspring.

It is just food.

It is a knowing thing, the crow,

but it knows nothing

of sin.

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