Issue Thirty - Summer 2017

The Misnomer Renaissance Faire

By Sherry Rind

The Airedale woke us, crashing and howling
against the door. John and I watched a coyote leap the fence,
its gold melting into the dark wood
and our hen a limp ribbon in its teeth.

The dog tracked scattered chicks 
we picked like cotton balls and stuffed
under another hen. Chickens forget their history overnight 
but we told each other the story over years.

    I watched him fade to dark.
    Our revels ended, our history
    mine alone to stage or improvise.

In this summer’s Renaissance
Death wears a white mask, gives candy to children.
There’s less mud than the olde days
but everyone’s wearing the same puffy shirts
and wads of skirt brushing the cow pies.

When the hens’ jester hats slip down their heads,
crows disguised as ravens get the crumbs.
Not every child gets lucky
at the trout pond. In warm water,
the fish lose appetite, go flaccid.

    In the hospital aquarium, fish refracted
    bigger than life, brighter in full-spectrum light.
    Someone cleans up the bodies.

Time refracts everyone’s history;
every marriage, a reenactment.
The singing pirates in real beards and gold earrings
don’t know jib from jibe.
July transforms from rain to heat. 
The lettuce bolts, the peas collapse and dry, 
Death steals their rustle.

    Time fills with belled hats
    and dancing to pipes, ribbons unfurled,
    our little lives a darkening mirage.

Copyright Rind 2017