Rude Birds

By Ricki Mandeville

Saturday at dawn, the birds raise a racket
in the oak outside my bedroom,
plucking me from Don Draper’s arms
(while he’s kissing me hard, right after punching
someone out for calling me a cougar).

I forget for a moment my love for all
living things, and try to conjure a brutal rain
that will beat like nails through the leaves,
shut up those bickering little beaks,
pound those pea-brained skulls into silence,
let me sleep and, at the same time, add
a romantic soundtrack
to my tryst with D.D.,
who now courts my affections
in a lighthouse on Cape Cod,
where by some incredible coincidence
it’s also raining and I’m tracing
with one Katmandu-red fingernail
the path of a raindrop down the glass
while you-know-who stands behind me,
his nose buried in my hair, hands laced
around my Scarlett O’Hara waist.

When I wake it’s pouring and the birds
are quiet. I have conjured rain!
An hour later, I furrow my brow
over a bran muffin at Starbuck’s
and concentrate hard, certain I can make
Don Draper materialize—
at which point I will glance up
from my iphone and smile at him
(with nothing caught in my teeth, of course)
as he pulls out a chair and kisses me hello.


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