Sept/Oct 2020 • Vol. XLII No. 5 All of This Is TrueSeptember 1, 2020 |

Bagging Mallards

All I wanted was the feathers. A wing or two to sow under Mom’s machine & spread so the wind could carry me out in the Heavens. A home. A body born naked with Daddy’s drunk blessing, ushered up anguished to sing. Not spit. Not flight ground down with bludgeoned beak, left all alone & still dripping. I dripped. Swelled in baths to bear it again, spilled out opaque & yellow. Yellow sunflowers smelling of meat. Yellow light when a train comes close. Yellow a moon over mountains in Mexico, a stone glossed smooth in a sling. All I wanted was a mom without wounds. Without whispers & want & secrets scratching names in floors, leaving their thumbnails & hair. Their teeth. Their sticky drawers with blood spots stained like sequins. How dare I. A bastard dancing song in the sky’s panorama. Go hide, little duck. You’re better off bit through. Or dead.

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