Claudia Grinnell The 2River View, 4.4 (Summer 2000)


A chicken, a rooster, or a goat—
my story begins with a sacrifice,
a choice, because god is good,

and my hands are bloody
and in the beginning
is always the deed

and then confusion.
In the beginning then
my hands were bloody again

and feathers stuck in my hands
and thighs and even my throat,
and there I stand, in my kitchen

beginning again. I tear
the flesh from the bones
and break the bones

and suck the marrow.
The heart I swallow
whole, it still beats.

With the beak I scratch
out my eyes. Both wings
I extend in my hands,

catching the updraft
from the fire and then
I remember to begin again.

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