A Bird Plucked Clean (or Rob)


I knew a flightless bird in Pembrey
A small robin, a young Rob
Who now lives in vague memory
Of echoed whistles for a sob.
What happens when you pluck a bird clean?
I'd like to know this ache I've never seen
Which moults feathers like men that grow
So old.
A face so sunk in youth so worn
And the crimson spatters of each tear
With every ripe rip
Of his hair
He grows cold
And so old.
Fell mute with each vile yank that pulled off skin
And he was no longer him
With insides punctured clean
Just piles of bone and tufts
Left from what he'd been.
Then out friends gag attempts at solace
Which help no more than bile,
For that small bird was helpless
And what they did was vile:
"Don't feel too sorry, hon
- He hadn't sang in a while."

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