You must read this poem


Birdsong

A sweet melody emanates
From the open window, flowing
In with the morning breeze
Softly, gently, to awaken the asleep.

I am awake, lying beneath covers,
Listening to the birdsong, while
The breeze wreaks havoc on a
Sheaf of papers reeking of sweat and toil.

It is warm, and cool all at once
And the haunting melody saves me
From falling back into
deep, deep slumber. I am at an abyss.

It takes some time, courage, but
Eventually, I throw off the covers.
The friendly breeze has become a foe
and chills me to the marrow.

I hurry to the window, to cut off
The breeze, now raging around my ankles
I can almost see them turning blue,
My teeth chatter as I turn to the window.

It is beautiful.
I stand entranced, I see life.

Have I seen this before? Has this
Existed always?

I abandon my ankles to their fate,
And drink in the morning.
A morning made especially for me,
It seems, a day of perfection.

The birdsong continues,
I look for the kind performer,
It seems to me, he is lost
Amidst all this exquisiteness

Then,  A note jars the morning,
An electronic note – an ugly
Word for an ugly sound –
It is my own birdcall.

I press a certain button,
It stops, and there is a stillness in the air.
No breeze, no birdsong.
I know –
It will not be one of those days.

Poem and artwork by:
Sadarchita Prasad
Christ University,
Bangalore

I know why the caged bird sings

A free bird leaps on the back
Of the wind and floats dowstream
Till the current ends and dips his wing
In the orange suns rays
And dares to claim the sky.

But a BIRD that stalks down his narrow cage
Can seldom see through his bars of rage
His wings are clipped and his feet are tied
So he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings with a fearful trill
Of things unknown but longed for still And his tune is heard on the distant hill for
The caged bird sings of freedom.

The free bird thinks of another breeze
And the trade winds soft through
The sighing trees
And the fat worms waiting on a dawn-bright
Lawn and he names the sky his own.

But a caged BIRD stands on the grave of dreams
His shadow shouts on a nightmare scream
His wings are clipped and his feet are tied
So he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings with
A fearful trill of things unknown
But longed for still and his
Tune is heard on the distant hill
For the caged bird sings of freedom.

Maya Angelou

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