The Cawing of the Crow

Crow photo

In time its caws

roused me from my ritual morning immersions:

sipping coffee, lacing words together,

drawing them like fingers

Across the surfaces of life,

Yet remaining untouched.


How long it cried out for my attention

Before I walked to the window to confront it,

I do not know, but I knew it was me it had called.


I found him alone, in the sacred tree

Whose heart was a dense ball of branches

That protruded in every direction

From the center of its trunk.

Conscious and centered, the crow sat

Well within the tree’s thick mystery,

Where no other bird would dare roost,

And waited patiently for me.


It sat so still, that had it not been for its eyes

floating ever so slightly, I would have thought it

a statue placed there by some barely sane sculptor.

With its stillness, with its silence, it held me

A prisoner of my own curiosity,

Waiting to know what it had to say.


But although time passed

and it sat eye to eye with me,

It said nothing, and after a time

Flew further into the distance,

And from another tree cawed once more,

And fell silent again.


It was only later in the day, when I saw you,

When your eyes met mine, silent and steady,

That I grasped the bird’s omen.

No wait, no matter how patient,

Would make any difference between us.

Mary Metzger is a 72 year old retired teacher who has lived in Moscow for the past ten years. She studied Women’s Studies under Barbara Eherenreich and Deidre English at S.U.N.Y. Old Westerbury. She did her graduate work at New York University under Bertell Ollman where she studied Marx, Hegel and the Dialectic. She went on to teach at Kean University, Rutgers University, N.Y.U., and most recenly, at The Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology where she taught the Philosophy of Science. Her particular area of interest is the dialectic of nature, and she is currently working on a history of the dialectic. She is the mother of three, the gradmother of five, and the great grandmother of 2.


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