You write ‘Love’ on her wrists
And watch it fade and blur through the tiny cracks in her skin
Until it’s washed away in the bathroom sink
And all that’s left is a featherlight kiss of ink on porcelain fingers.
She’s rather like a swallow, you see –
Your love is lost beneath her thrill of flight,
And the only way to keep her grounded
Is to tie her to this ring and cage her.
You don’t have the heart to hear her sing for freedom,
And not the mind to set her free,
So you spread your lies like birdseed
To keep her interest that much longer.
But before you hope for too long,
Know that birds can only eat so much
Before they fly to their winter homes,
And come summer’s end,
She may be feathers on your pillow.

by Morgan Smitherman

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