tagNon-Erotic PoetryThe Nightingale

The Nightingale


I love your heart more than I love your crown.
~Hans Christian Anderson

I came to the window,
the branch closest to it,
and he watched me.

The old man watched me,
sitting in the tatters of his skin,
brittle as a dying branch,
pale and parched.

His lusterless eyes watched me.

All these riches are nothing,
brocades woven in shining threads,
brilliant gold, turquoise lapped
against ivory silk.

All these riches are nothing
to the dust of a man,
to an arid ruler fading
into twilight’s expanse,
shrinking on a velvet throne.

I sang for him.

He was so still, my heart
moved in my breast,
my sharp eyes moist.

I sang for him,
crept closer, fluttering,
offering small lilting notes.

I sang to him~

Live a little longer,
old man, live
a little longer.

Even in the cage,
I sang. I tried to love
the jeweled perch for him.
I sang. I tried for him,
but I was dying.

I am no creature built of tin,
covered with rubies, sapphires.
I cannot match a ticking beat,
a calculated chirp.
When evening shadowed
through my cage and laced
against my wings, I could not match
the brilliance of their emerald eyes.

He watched me.
and said,
Nightingale, live
a little longer.

He fumbled at the cage,
and I am free.

I listen to the forest
sing to me. I sing
to the night, the sky.

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byAngeline© 13 comments/ 5773 views/ 3 favorites

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