Diminishing Returns

A crow sits in the dark, thinking
I’m an owl scouring this field for mice.

Then he thinks, I’m suddenly wise, too:
rem acu tetigisti, brother.

He looks in all his leafy cupboards
for testimonials and diplomas.

Finding none, he says perhaps
I am an hawk, and he can feel

his beak bend down and a pleasurable
blood lust fill his mind like gasoline.

Oh, I’m a real killer now, I am,
he says to his glinting talons,

but, really, I ought to be sleeping,
so he sleeps. In his dream

he is a melon and a huge blade
severs one half of him from the other.

When he wakes, falling, he is two
blackbirds with one wing each.

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