Thursday, September 8, 2011

Shrike (Niten)


The shrike is called a butcher bird.
He impales insect prey on thorns,
Pinned wriggling, eaten at leisure
(Behavior both practical and lurid),
And a pantry to which he returns
When more toxic morsels have cured.
Niten makes us see him from below.
(Is that an upturned face in the leaves?)
He is lord and maker of the universe,
And a hunched and distracted fellow.
He neither exults at death, nor grieves.
He is what is, for better or for worse.
In that face (see it?), such blindness.
A worm prefers the shrike's kindness.

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