Only she knows why she chose the mailbox
over easier incubators,
why she endured the white slices of envelopes
mass ads flopped in inky curls
the latest celebrity's glossy stare.
When we bullied out her careful twigs
and dumped them daily under the azaleas
she chose new branches and arranged them
as patiently as if each time were the first.
She ignored the postman's knuckles on her breast,
the tidal flux of mail mayhem.
She fluffed her nest with wiry puffs of yellow insulation,
silvered scraps of plastic bags
and the best feathers
torn from her own chest,
the fierce obstinance of her love insisting:
This. This. This. This.
Elizabeth Vignali is an optician and writer. Her poems and stories have been published in various journals, including Menacing Hedge, Floating Bridge Review, Literary Mama, and Clover, A Literary Rag. Her chapbook, Object Permanence, is available from Finishing Line Press. She lives in Washington State with her family and their unlikely Chihuahua.