The Black Bird

‘Poetry & Prose by Poet, Cheolsung Lee’

The Black Bird

The temple chimney
puffs out the pitch-black smoke of cremation
that bird there flying slowly above it
does not fly away even when morning becomes noon
does not fly away even when the day’s sun hangs in the western hills
but when a woman opens the big barred gates and comes out of the temple
it follows behind her
the black bird
follows the black woman.
The woman passes the garden of the temple as night falls
along the road that runs straight through the forest
across the wide fields and the low hills
by the village that glows with dusky fires
and stands beside the river

the black bird

goes inside the black woman

the black woman


      -Varanasi, India