selective focus photograph of black crow

It was a god awful omen,
but clever crows spoke to me
in windswept auguries
so I had to seek out the old one
to pry the truth from their beaks
and the mystery from their wings.

Chicken bones jangle out of a bag,
tea leaves caught in my throat-
“your destiny is here”
scratched into the dirt,
while ancient bones
root around like scheming devils
breaking all the eggs.

None of it made any sense,
but the gnawing chaos
wrapped itself around my neck
and pulled me like a witching rod
to that stinking, swirling pot
of feathers and false hope,
lies and smashed eggs.

Dead-eyed and weary,
wondering how this gambit prevails
with furtive hands grasping
for reverence and pleading for gold-
there isn’t strength in this ruse,
just my mortal weakness
to trust
that the flapping of wings
means something, anything
to the half cocked soothsayer
fumbling for a metaphor.

© Nancy Botta, 2018


One thought on “Orinthomancer.

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