Description: Just joined up and bashed out this as a starter, so it is a bit rough and ready. :)
By way of explanation, the references to the "black boy" and "butcher bird" are really Australian oriented. The black boy is also known as a grasstree, and tends to grow in the drier regions of Oz frequented by bushfires. They usually have bare, black stumps and grow very, very slowly. The butcher bird in Australia tends to reflect its name by staking its prey (usually birds smaller than it, lizards, insects, etc.) on tree limbs, barbed wire or anything kind of sharp before tearing it apart. It also has an amazing voice (similar to a magpie) and shrieks out to its mates when in danger (or when defending itself from larger predators - butcher birds are known to gang up magpies, falcons, etc. when threatened).
Hope that helps :)
my butcher bird -------------------------------------------
There is no wind, just the dry, stale air
hanging heavier than a Hessian blanket,
while the thin red dirt floats up
to fill my nose and mouth;
Yet hairs prickle, an involuntary shiver,
and a claw grips at my chest.
Briefly, I falter;
just a second or two, in my tracks,
the road ahead is long and I
unable to see beyond the shimmering heat.
In that moment,
suspended like the choking dust in the air,
shared laughter as cigarette smoke drifts to the ceiling,
singing out of tune to the radio as we drive home,
a smile at my not so clever remark,
a light touch to skin
……… and in a blink it's gone.
I resume my tread, slower and heavier.
The heat pushing on my shoulders
and the sun blistering the back of my neck.
I have been cheated; I know that now.
This is not how it is supposed to be.
A butcher bird is to caw out a warning;
a blackboy to mark the desert plain;
a tightening of the gut;
a moment of knowing.
Where was my butcher bird, my lone blackboy?
But my plea goes unnoticed.
There is no one left to hear me,
no room in this landscape of my making.
Hey, this is terrific! I love it. Maybe I'm reading it differently, but I see a careless word as having ruined a relationship. What you said! It ruined everything. No warning. You dropped him on the thorns and it was over. Now, life (love) is a desert, a "landscape of my (your) making".
I liked the symbolic use of the "butcher bird", the flashback...rememberance, and just your use of language in general. You definitely have a way with words. "In that moment / suspended like the choking dust in the air" Here is isolation and struggle in one. We not only see the blowing dust, but a near-hanging. This creates a sense of remorse, of knowing or. at least feeling, guilty (tried and convivcted). So, my question is "What did you say?", but that's another poem.
Simply let me say that I enjoyed this one. It was entertaining to read, the way that you constructed it. It held my interest through to the end, and left me wanting to hear more from you. In other words, terrific!
sup ausy... The first stanza was phenom...so very vibrant a desciption, I am loving it. I really got caught up in the picture you presented there. It was an excellent linear description.
Kind of a vauge odd poem, but i find myself liking it nonetheless. Definitly a good intro to the sight.
The second stanza was jolting and unexpected and in distinct contradiction from the first. It is so much softer and happy then the first.
I am at a loss form a viable theory on why you need the warning you were looking for in the third stanza. The only guess I can venture it something in the first stanza brings on this flashback of some happy relationship or perhaps past love...which for some reason is gone now. Perhaps it is your fault it is gone which would explain the last line. And the pain of this abscence is why you wanted the warning in the first place. I am definitly reaching here. I would love to hear some elucidation on this piece. Fill me in I am curious...I enjoyed you write though. Great descriptions...Lefty...
I found myself having a difficult time breathing after the first few lines. I could almost feel the brash light and heat of a desert sun bearing down upon me. And then the second stanza, a brief break in the bleak desperation, much like a mirage, it taunted me...as I'm sure it taunts you. And then back to the presence, with the blistering and cruel sun. The fact that the life in the second stanza is now gone. It is bitter, like red dust. Very well done
I like the way you set of the second stanza with the "......." It forces the reader to pause, making the transition to the memories obvious. I could just feel a bit of foggy haze as I slid back. The second one works just as well, forcing the reader to ponder the light touch for a instant, then BAM it's gone.
hmmm. I am trying to decipher the meaning here.... I can see that the painted this desert as a reflective environment of your lonliness.... and the flash of memomry... laughter and a soft touch of skin... But the balck boy butcher bird... this metaphor I am a little unclear on... Maybe you can add another line as to "what happened" but maybe you did, and I am not getting it. all in all I enjoyed the read...the imagery was very vivid and the end... "the landscape of your making" was nicley put... we create our own heartbreak a lot of times... (did I get it yet??)