Holding the Moment (a cento)

Little Birds are hiding,
where statues remember me youthful and blessed.
No birds. No blossoms on the dried flowers.
So, art thou feathered, art thou flown?

The sad account of fore-bemoaned moan,
has awaked in our hearts, my beloved, a grief that may not die.
When night comes on gently,
the larks like thunder rise and suthy round.


This entire poem uses lines from other poets.  However, I did replace Yeats’ “sadness” with “grief” in L6.
L1: Little Birds (Lewis Carroll)
L2: Summer Garden (Anna Akhmatova)
L3: I Don’t Remember The Word I Wished To Say (Osip Mandelstam)
L4: The Fledgling (Edna St. Vincent Millay)
L5: Sonnet 30 (Shakespeare)
L6: The White Birds (William Butler Yeats)
L7: Dream Variations (Langston Hughes)
L8: The Autumns Birds (John Clare)

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Flying Around My Back

A down and out vagrant, silently singing the
blues through scarlet eyes, weeps upon this
lustrous silk lap while we wait for her highness, who
sits on hands dripping with egg yolk.

Painted cheeks and impeccable hair—nothing short of
an illusion.  We perform for them, for you, and for
us, but not for me.

Never for me.