The Swarm

Blackbirds envelop the green grass
across the street
early in the morning,
moving together in a cluster of fluttering wings.
I shift my position in bed
to gain a better view,
now squatting and looking out the window
as the dark wave gains a new tide
and comes shrieking and soaring as one blanket mass
straight toward me.

For a brief moment I fear
the yawning grave is finally calling me
back to the dust, dirt and ash
from whence I once came,
but then, in unison, the wave breaks,
the aggressive wings grow calm, and
the swarm settles down
as it lands now in my front yard.

I exhale and smile.
The beauty of chaos shifts
as order is reclaimed in my respite –
the reaper has granted my reprieve;
and though I know he will surely
one day come hunting for me,
whether it be with a merle of blackbirds,
a murder of crows,
a wake of vultures,
or one-on-one, all alone, with his scythe in hand,
at least for now I can lay back
safely and soundly in my warm bed,
knowing that while I dream about the future,
it will be the worms, outside in the cold,
that serve as today’s sacrifice to the cycle.

This poem was written back in January of this year, and it is one of the pieces included in my debut chapbook “A Black Wave Cometh” which was released in a digital version by Dink Press a few months ago. The chapbook is available through Etsy at this link.

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