Blackbird

All that long-lighted day I watched her
rope-spinning, flinging it bridge-ways
across the clear river, bee-hum loud
in the glade. Rain held off and held off
as it did in such a summer (a wizard’s trick
or maybe of the crone herself). A girl gathering
words like blackberries, fingers mouth juice-
stained and she never saw me in her headlong
desire but oh, I would have told her heartsease
is not worth the price. For a word I would have
told her an eased heart is nothing, songless.
But she came by belief and all that light-
long day I watched her, aching, for it was
only a step to the crone’s hut and now
she’ll never find her way back.

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