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On the black wet branches of the linden,

still clinging to the umber leaves of late fall,

two crows land. They say, Stop, and still I want

to make them into something they are not.

Odin’s ravens, the bruja’s eyes. What news

are they bringing of our world to the world

of the gods? It can’t be good. More suffering

all around, more stinging nettles and toxic

blades shoved into the scarred parts of us,

the minor ones underneath the trees. Rain

comes while I’m still standing, a trickle of water

from whatever we believe is beyond the sky.

The crows seem enormous but only because

I am watching them too closely. They do not

care to be seen as symbols. A shake of a wing,

and both of them are gone. There was no message

given, no message I was asked to give, only

their great absence and my sad privacy

returning like the bracing, empty wind

on the black wet branches of the linden.


Ada Limón

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