They jump into your chaos
Unperturbed

By the dense mesh your cage

Of invisible barbs presents;

Built through years of to and fro,

Up and down against

The same cold fence.

Pushed on again

And always again

By that needle voice

Shaped of myelin and synapse,

Amplified by experience

On repeat.

‘Walkies!’ it cries and back you went,

Pavlovian, obedient,

To dangled collar and lead

Gathering more spurs to weave

Your own briar thicket.

No faerie curse is here princess,

You’re your own cruel gaoler,

Architect of mess.

But they come on crooked wings-

Tattered feathers stained

By blood and wine and pain-

Stronger for beating against

The rules they give the bird to.

Battle-drunk they come, striding through

The tangles in which princes flounder.

And laughter, the defiant screech

Of fearsome ravens, furious owls,

Fills and warms the dusty halls

Of your imprisoned heart.

~Polly Oliver (2017)

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7 thoughts on “Coven – with wine

  1. Ah yes, the dreaded “walkies”! Not quite the same at 25 below zero with a wind chill factor that takes the temperature down. Those were the nights, my friend … I love the ravens and the owls of the imprisoned heart! Good one.

    Like

    1. Thank you Roger! I got a bit tangled in this, if you’ll pardon the pun, but the owls and ravens were also supposed to evoke the powerful, rebellious, feathered femininity of Celtic mythology namely the Morrigan and Blodeuwedd.
      25 below!?! I would actually die!x

      Liked by 1 person

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