The bent man on a bridge in Amsterdam
feeds crows from his hand.
We are suburban beings, you and I.
I don’t need you to need me that way.
We found each other when you were young,
fledgling with blood-red throat and blue eyes.
That I do not speak like angels doesn’t matter.
You come when I caw out a rasp-hello.
You bring blackness and shine
To the street lamp, my offer on a mailbox.
Three bows, three cucks. I bow back.
Are we friends for fat and kitten kibble?
Did I help you through last winter,
you with short tail feathers?
I admire the risks you take. Trust
that I will see you on the roof.
As I bend down to pull the willowherb,
you fly low, over. Black shadow is back.
You’re ready for me to call again.
I do, every day,
call out my loneliness.
Tricia Knoll is an Oregon poet with more than a casual interest in crows, creeks, and climate change. Her poetry collections include Ocean’s Laughter (Aldrich Press, 2016) and a chapbook Urban Wild (Finishing Line Press, 2014). Website: triciaknoll.com