Songster

by S.J. Litherland

She was a small singing bird, a young wren

you caught in your hand and felt her heartbeat.

You chose two rings, one for her foot and then

one for your hand. She fluttered like green wheat

beginning to sense the wind, not ready

for ploughing. She flew into the bush and

when you came for me, I saw your greedy

eyes still alighting and smelt the ring band

on your finger. While we were arguing

the two rings fell from your pocket like crows

at a wedding, the giving and wearing

intentional as double knots, zeros,

the two rings plural and not singular,

irreducible in kind and number.