Out your old, raw eyes
between thin crows’ feet
their walking hunger
sees black fallow fields.

All meat and feathers:
crow parliaments,
mouthy parent birds
guillotine stray seeds,

divorce husk from flesh.
Strewn men and women
hold back hardship
broadcast dry fresh seeds.

Black birds snatch and eat
food for sparse winters.
Starved you enter a village
are greeted, feasted.

Given best shelter, clothes
food, women, men, friends.
A short year revolves.
To scare birds who prey

village men and women
hone edges on blades,
cut short your visit,
place you in a field
tied to seasoned wood.

© 2017, Paul Brookes

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