Memory Hanging in the Cedar

During WWII.  Riverside Drive, Jacksonville, Florida.

I felt a little chick’s beak, pip-
pip-pip within its moist warm shell,
cupped in my hand, as cracks went zip

and zap, and cast a magic spell
beneath my flashlight.  Put it back
before its Momma raises hell,

I thought.  There!  Nest of gunnysack
deep in the dark, beneath the floor
of our back porch, safe from attack . . . .

Soon she was strutting with a corps
of little hatchlings.  Six would trail
her, scratching, peeping to her score.

In time, just one turned out a male,
grew its majestic comb, blue-red . . . .
The yard-man caught it by the tail.

He hung it feet-up, wings out-spread
in our old cedar tree — and slit
its throat — where it just bled and bled.

Leland Jamieson

If you have any comments on this poem Leland Jamieson  would be pleased to hear them.

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