The Rival

by Laurie Byro
Desert Moon Review
Honorable Mention, February 2007
Judged by Pascale Petit


Long afterwards I knew she had entered
my house, not as a scavenger,
a buzzard or a gull, but as a wagtail.
She cocked her head and studied me

as I hung blue sheets on the line. The silence
and fluttering I’d loved as a child had polished her
a lustrous yellow. Lot’s wife could be dissolved
into a night of salty stars but what to do

with her? In feverish August I willed snowflakes
on my skin to ease the summer heat. I warned
her to leave us for exotic Africa, chanted

your name as idle sunshine buttered
her wings. I preened myself to prepare
for my late migration from jealousy to song.



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