harvest
  
 she is planting
 the dead birds
 in the back garden
  
 imagines delicate
 plumed stems
 sprout in moist soil.
  
 there is a place
 below where bones
 reknit, grow flesh
  
 become the small buds
 of unhatched warblers.
 it is a cosmology
  
 made up, a child’s
 mystery emblazed
 with wonder.
  
 I can hear them
 singing in the dirt
 she says.
  
 tomorrow we will
 dig them up
 paint the faithless sky
             with feathers
 
  
 tatyana
  
 why did you think
 he could save you
  
 poets are not known
 for kindness
             bravery
  
 risk only words
 betray themselves
  
 for an image
 a line like
 sharpened glass
  
 you were drowning
 alone
  
 and he was far away
 writing an ocean
 composing the sky
  
 


  
 pretty things
  
 don’t know if
 it’s finished yet
  
 this pretty thing
 I’m working on
  
 has ignored me for days
 disappeared
  
 is out prowling
 the village
  
 may return with
 a live bird
 in its jaws
  
 a small dismembered
 rodent. . . one can
 only hope.
  
 is it too much to ask
 for a few stolen lines
             a stray image
  
 pray it doesn’t
 scavenge too close
 to the heart of the night
  
 grow blind
 with darkness
  
 bring nothing back
 but hunger 

Born (1951) and raised in Ladysmith on Vancouver Island, Ken Cathers has a B.A. from the University of Victoria and a M.A. from York University in Toronto. Has been published in numerous periodicals, anthologies as well as seven  books of poetry,  most recently Letters From the Old Country with Ekstasis Press. Lives in the country with his family and his  trees.

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