Thursday 24 November 2022

Bibek Limbu, Poetry 2022 Shortlist

That Feathers Can Burgeon From Ash

When I grew my wings, I tore them immediately out from their worn

down sockets. I have a stubborn knack for keeping myself soil rooted; teeth,

tongue, & claw turned inward, set to self destruct.

But I have learned that fire is cleansing, that feathers can burgeon from ash.

I feel them now-damp & white

-sprouting like tulips from my back.

This time I will not rush their growth or rip them from bone.

I will nurture every plume with Moroccan oil & all the amber words I’ve left

unspoken. I have spent more swollen, salted nights than I care to count

promising myself I would.

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