blackbird online journal spring 2002 vol.1 no. 1



Blood Feathers

Waking up on a white concrete roof
behind a billboard—
shadows of a pigeon wing arc in profile, gigantic.

Think they are huge envelopes to hold me—
see red flow through the quills,
blood red heaven arms.


God isn't mysterious,
he is a pissy crank prone to fits of narcissism and vengeance.

Last month, I wrote a poem with the always-new idea that
God is dead, God is missing, God never was

and developed a cyst
on my back the size of a softball.

He could have made the point with much more subtlety—
someone waving me in on the highway,

or with much more elegance—

the neon lights of Hollywood Boulevard
shutting down to let the aurora bourealis

settle along the rooftops,
languid, weaving feathers.


It seems the less I believe in God,
the more biblical life around me becomes.


The front door kicked in—
thick rectangle of darkness
swallows the room in shape of noise.

With a shot in the back,
the bullet lodges under my right shoulder blade—
I fall—

the floor gives out and the numbness
spreads across my back like a birth,
arcing parachute of falling 

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