Lines From The Ninety-First Floor

Malachi Black
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I have been givenwhat I never asked
to see: the airborne
pigeon vivisected

by the scissor
of an airplane’s
wing, the bird’s
eye open, wholly

open to the half-
beat of its severed
vein, suspended
midway, only

between the purling
updraft and
a sudden slack

in the flightpath’s
string: as if
the bird were being held

before it fell,
as if the act of being
halved itself
had set the bird against

its fall no less
than flight: as if the bird,
in being briefly
still, found second life.

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