VxPoem ID: 37524
Posted: January 2nd. 2010 11:07:12 AM
Old Mother and the Crow
Age Group: Adult
Old Mother and the Crow
“Tain’t nuthin’ but Winter megrims, I s’pose, ”
she said, plucking her specs from the end of her nose
and wiping a smudge from the edge of one lens,
gazed out at the yard and the barn and the hens.
The sky was like flannel, ‘twas dark and ‘twas gray
and, though under her breath, I could still hear her say
(with a lump in her throat that might well have been tears)
that Spring had damned well best come early this year.
A dark, lonely crow landed out in the yard
and the Old Mother jumped to her feet with a start;
ran out on the porch, searched the fields and the sky,
but she found no mate for the crow standing by.
The one, lonely bird hopped up onto the roof
of the little hen house to the left of the stoop,
shook out his feathers and threw back his head
then cawed loud enough to awaken the dead.
“Get out! Go away!” the Old Mother cried,
but the crow held his ground, her request was denied.
The Old Mother shuffled back in to her chair
where she sat, and she stewed, and she commenced to stare
at the unmated bird as he pranced to and fro
with no wife at home waiting, and no place to go.
The Old Mother buried her face in her hands
as I bid her explain what I can’t understand.
Her anguish, to me, seemed completely absurd
because, after all, it was only a bird!
Her faded old eyes were nearly as gray
as the clouds hanging over the heavens that day
and across her old brow came a shadow of pain
as she patiently settled herself to explain.
“There be no secrets this life can be keep’n
when warnin’s and omens we’re carefully heed’n.
If the heart’s filled with sorrow and spirits are low,
be on the lookout for one lonely crow.”
The Winter continued to trudge slowly by,
although each day the sun laid more claim to the sky,
the lonely old crow, that unwanted guest,
had, in the joists of the roof, built a nest.
He’d come and he’d caw each day around noon
and then disappear ‘fore the rise of the moon.
So was his custom, day after day,
and he passed what was left of the Winter that way.
The Old Mother finally took to her bed
and traded her living for dying instead.
Then, just as I thought that her grief wouldn’t pass,
there came, one bright day, a light tap on the glass.
I looked to the yard and observed something new;
instead of one lonely old crow, there were two.
They fluttered and flew from one place to another
and called out in glee to the tired Old Mother.
She came to the window and, after a while,
slowly but surely she started to smile.
Her age fell away, and when it was done
she stood there the Maiden, no longer the Crone.
“Ye see?” she said grinning, “the time of rebirth
is hastened by two crows, the bringers of mirth.
The Earth is awakenin’, it’s time now to go
out into the fields where we’ll reap what we sow!”
And with the radiance that change often brings,
she transformed to a sparrow and spread wide her wings,
and out through the window she flew and in tow
were the frolicking figures of two happy crows.
Author's Location: Concord, New Hampshire
More Poems: Sparrowgael has posted 21 additional poems- View them?
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