A Blackbird

A blackbird bobs obscenely
taps his toes on frozen asphalt
listens to a chirping track
of breakup music

He tells the houses how
he once saw lightning strike
a tall tree
and it paled and cracked
before its shadows
were interrupted by fire

He beats a wing
as if that is the punchline
because really he knows
the secret to breaking,
which isn’t a secret
but he’ll say it anyway:

apply ice to stop the swelling.

Madeleine Quirk