title after John Ashbery
Between sleep and the blackness of feathers,
two ravens turn in place, pause and preen.
near power lines, a buzzing pause which also
masks my own anxiousness, silence without peace.
in a flimsy gray paper-kind of dawn
which almost seems flattened like roadkill
Something uplifting in corvid ablutions
balances the morning on a black-coated wire
against the off-kilter drab surrounding us.
It’s routine as shared meditation—they
with primping, me with watching them—rituals
which make me feel less like I’ve napped on a wire,
current dancing underneath. The birds settle
and we rest as if all were ebony fledged.
Bio: Jonathan Yungkans is a Los Angeles-based writer and photographer whose work has appeared in MacQueen’s Quinterly, Panoply, Synkroniciti and other publications. His second poetry chapbook., Beneath a Glazed Shimmer, won the Clockwise Chapbook Prize and was published by Tebor Bach in 2021.