Caged Bird

She sits in a circle
of ravelled grass,
with a caged bird
perched on her sprawling dress.
The little bird loves to
watch this wild garden;
its cacophany of swaying colours,
all around,
plunging toward him,
but for the copper bars.
And he chirps from time to time,
through nervous
quick glances.
But the young girl
clasps the cage,
to steady his excited
little body,
just as other benign hands
have built a sanctuary
around her,
and placed her there,
a contented, clipped
creature.
No enclosure is too cruel
for tame animals,
nor this garden,
which rings her
and the bird, like an
espaliered skull.
Here on the soft familiar grass,
with its herds of flowers that
dip their giraffe necks
in their green pens,
these two
sit and admire
a charming wild world,
that plunges and leaps
all around,
and always misses them
by a hair.

Copyright Ricky Barrow 2013

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