CROWS ON A WIRE.
by Shane Hubbard
I see clouds forming for winter rain
As wind redirects the weather vane
And points it north toward the gray where I spy
A murder of crows set against the sky.
One flees the alignment; six remain.
The wind is brisk, yet the crows are still
On the telephone wire above the hill;
Then, shifting his feet and lifting his head,
A second crow’s sable wings are spread,
And five are left in the winter chill.
A minute passes, no less, no more,
And a third crow does as those before;
He flaps his wings and flutters away
Into the pervading, overcast gray
Till out of sight. And now there are four.
The monochrome scene is charmingly stark,
Each dusky bird an ink-like mark
On a single line in a silver sea;
Now a fourth crow sallies, leaving three
Perched high as the evening hours grow dark.
From the forefront of the ashen hue
A fifth crow vacates on nature’s cue;
A feather falls from the fleeing bird,
Their numbers shrinking to less than a third
Of what began. And now there are two.
A curtain of clouds obstructs the sun,
A misty veil that winter has spun,
But still I witness two birds aligned,
And, lo, one departs, leaving behind
A final crow—a murder of one.