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words by Lissomer

Literature by Sammur-amat

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Submitted on
June 20
Submitted with Writer


30 (who?)
The street-level apartment,
abandoned from wear and tornado
last spring, tells us love stories
in graffiti inscriptions.

Close enough to the road
that it leans looming over it,
the complex slumps, unused,
except by an eight year old boy;
old enough to have been told not to
and young enough to not understand.

He has hands that stutter—
because he folds paper
like he seals envelopes:
with purpose.

He has a mind that isn't reluctant;
why wish upon a star
when the beings
that can grant wishes
are in the spaces
between constellations?

Together, his head and hands
craft paper cranes.

Between knotted levels of rope,
cranes spread layered wings
and bob, breath-like,

He molds shapes
out of hangers,
nestling his dreams
into metal and numbered pages.

He has soul in his eyes
and heart in his palms;
why doubt the beauty of self
when he can craft it
from discarded treasures?

A sound heard from his right tightly
to loosely on his left: an injured bird
is cultivated on the curbside.

Its head is down, staying down;
its wing up, staying up.

But the bird breathes: down, up.

In the alley,
his hanging garden of paper birds
on knotted levels of rope
bob, breath-like,

Why make a thousandth crane
when he can save a real one?

Little bird,
feathers splint with tape
and a popsicle stick--
nestled tight with his dreams.

He stands on tiptoes,
reaching, reaching;
clips the fabric boat
to metal hook
and lets it slide.

And he spins
among the cranes below,
a garden waltzing to his beat,
thin wings fluttering above the street,
and he waits
for his bird to fly home.

Why put yourself out on a limb
for happiness
if there's no one to share the song with?

He doesn't doubt his happiness
out on the limb of an apartment balcony
because the chirp-trill of a nursed bird
is inexpensive to heal.

He catches rocks
instead of wishing stars
and collects them
on thick twine,
his heart scrawled--
a different kind of poetry--
across torn pages
because the beings 
might not hear him,
but someone will.

His small hands clasp,
stutter against,
release bits of him
throughout the sky
because life has to be more
than dimming stars...

and the belief
that not everyone
is worth being saved.
Add a Comment:
Sammur-amat Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2014   General Artist
i adore you two :heart:
TwilightPoetess Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
And we adore YOU!
Sammur-amat Featured By Owner Nov 16, 2014   General Artist
stargirl2791 Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
oh i love this! thank you for sharing the inspiration for this; it made everything so much more meaningful and beautiful! 
i have a thing for paper cranes, treasured trash, and hope, and this poem and video tie all of those together :heart:
TwilightPoetess Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you so much, from both Nichrysalis and myself!  The song is GORGEOUS, and the video is just...SO inspiring! :heart:
stargirl2791 Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
yes... i had tears in my eyes while watching it :heart:
hopeburnsblue Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
 Beth, this is gorgeous! I was just telling Nic that I loved the imagery and partial anaphora with the questions, as well as the themes of childlike compassion ... and then I realized it was a collab between the  two of you. You do beautiful work together. Love it! :hug:
TwilightPoetess Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
:iconheartglompplz: Mel, thank you so much! Nic is one of my favorite people to collaborate with, and I'm glad to hear that we work well together from an outside point of view!

I really do have to thank him, though--he found the video/song we based this on, and he came up with the idea of the questions and the answers at the end. :heart:
rlkirkland Featured By Owner Jun 22, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Makes you care... a wonderful piece! :sun:
TwilightPoetess Featured By Owner Jun 22, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you, Ron! :heart:
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