KENTUCKY SENIOR POET LAUREATE
Barb McMakin

A BIRD IN THE HAND

For some reason
I turn down going out that night,
choosing instead to pick blackberries
in the fencerow.

Leaves rustle in the thicket
and berries vibrate.
A sparrow flutters,
pierced by a thorn.

His twig of a leg crusts brown
from dried blood, the limp foot
draws closed like a claw.

I support him in my palm,
remove the offending brier.
He flies free.

Across the field,
a multitude
of lilies.

Barb McMakin
Crestwood, Kentucky

BARB McMAKIN, 55, Crestwood, Kentucky, is a member of the Green River Writers. She is employed by Oldham County Public Library. Besides creative writing, she enjoys gardening and herding stock with her border collie, Lilly. This is her second SPL win. She is a Leo.