D. A. Borer
The second time I became Raven it was no mistake
even though I had been thinking of owls
or to be precise, one particular owl. The mist was warm
and my hearing was sharper than the auricle of a knife-carved wooden Indian who has little to do but sit and listen
and wonder when fire or hatchet would give life again.
I reached up to feel my ears when I realized I had no fingers
or ears or normal nothing but the all black
of me was the new normal
I took flight into the thick Pacific fog
fearless for the first time in my life
free to be
me, only me, all of me, free.
The first time I became Raven was when that one particular owl
in the high meadow of Mother Jun hooted me into being
a soldier Odin set
upon the fresh scent of the wise warrior queen
But then I tarried, for a time lost, and began consorting
with convivial crows who did not trust
me at first but gorged the crusts I bore to befriend them
as I forgot Raven in the comfort of being Crow
The third time I became Raven the crows were concerned
until they saw me with a single sideways glance alarm a hawk
into flapping a frenzy.
Raptors are sharp of talon and beak, but the crows all know
they can be had.
As the crows cackled and cawed
I chuckled and croaked, soared north, catching in an echo
of the first hoot, the lingering scent of Athena: Muse
who made me Me,
D. A. Borer roams the shores of the Monterey Bay. He has worked as a paperboy, general laborer, doodle-bugger, meat-packer, stone poacher, ranch-hand, and war college instructor. His poetry appears in The Write Launch and Sonder Midwest, and Rise Up Review, his prose in Montana Mouthful. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.