Poem:Seeing Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds

Like holiday poetry? Here’s one I wrote a few years ago for Halloween.

 

Seeing Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds at Age Seven

My mom was there but not — asleep on the couch,
head lolled back, mouth open wide
enough for a parakeet to fly in
had ours not died already.
My dad was gone.

Nobody knew my brother and I
were getting away with something.
Late night TV. The Birds.
We dared each other to watch.

Normally I’d try lifting my mom’s
lower jaw into place once or twice
of an evening; I worried
about moths and things.
But this night I wouldn’t risk waking her.

Later I wished I had,
even months later, an eon of regret in childhood –
when I’d look up from my coloring in the afternoon
having heard a flutter near the window
knowing sharp beaks could slash right through the screen,
when I’d run flat out the three blocks to school
books held over my head as a shield,
and especially when the crows gathered at dusk,
raucous and shifting and crowding, and then
more especially when they settled down,
waiting.

 

(This originally appeared in Well Versed.)

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4 comments on “Poem:Seeing Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds

  1. Barbara Horter says:

    Very well versed…the children in cahoots…the mom there but not and the aftermath of a movie they couldn’t have watched if mom hadn’t fallen asleep…great writing Susan!

    Like

  2. You would have had a hard time at Midway Atoll where I once lived–millions of nesting albatross with great big beaks!

    http://www.grindtv.com/wildlife/midway-atoll-albatross-count-1-39-million/

    Like

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