Caged Bird – free verse

My father had a black starling.
It loved eating kepok* banana – no, had no choice.
It sang – no, cried
It danced – no, nervous
It entertained our guests – no, tried to escape
It slept peacefully – no, dreamed nightmares days and nights
It did happily – no, a prisoner.

The cage was wires and wood.
We hoped it could talk.

Our family moved
To a much smaller home.
Our starling got neglected
How much I can feel the guilty is like a teary moment to a bloody heart!

The black starling got a home
Bigger:
My mother’s relative.

It loved eating kepok* banana – no, had no choice.
It sang – no, cried
It danced – no, nervous
It entertained our guests – no, tried to escape
It slept peacefully – no, dreamed nightmares days and nights
It did happily – no, a prisoner.

The cage was wires and wood, half we gave to it.
We hoped it could talk.

If you are dead, dear Black Starling,
Be in a peaceful moment.
Fly with your beautiful wings, black and shiny!
Feed your life with all the fresh memories.
Forget all the cages and bars.
Be the air
Be the vapour
Be the atmosphere
Be our silent guidance to the freedom out of this cage.

Thank you for your will to be our prisoner
Thank you for your sincerity to be our exhibition
Thank you for your sacrifice to feed our ego
Thank you for your life to complete our purity.

See you across the bridge.
You’ve met him, right?
Tell him you forgive us.

Yours truly,

Me

Shanghai – Dec. 15, 2018 – 12:05 noon is here

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