The Crow and the Lime Green Plastic Egg

The Crow and the Lime Green Plastic Egg

there’s a crow
black against the snow
pecking at a lime green plastic egg
down by Jericho Beach Park

the egg will not crack

frustrated,
the crow grabs the egg in its beak
flies to the top of a tree
drops the egg
and flies back down to check its status
the crow repeats this sequence
a number of times

the egg will not crack

the lifetime of a crow
is approximately eight years
the lifetime of a lime green plastic egg
is approximately five hundred years

the egg, therefore, will outlast the crow
the best we can hope for
is that the crow is laying down
some kind of evolutionary marker
one that establishes for future crows
that not all objects
shaped like eggs
are actual eggs

a woman scurries by
wearing a long black hooded coat
the hood obscures her face
she appears to be on an urgent mission

the crow turns from the egg
and cackles:
Where’s your scythe, Mrs. Death,
where’s your scythe?
You can’t do grim, if you don’t have a sickle
if you don’t have a scythe.
Where’s your scythe, Mrs. Death,
where’s your scythe?

The theme this week over at earthweal was “Already Dead”, I missed the deadline for that one so I’m also linking this to Open Link Weekend at earthweal.

15 thoughts on “The Crow and the Lime Green Plastic Egg

  1. kim881

    This poem is brutally realistic, a concrete poem that describes the situation as it is, and also has an underlying message. The juxtaposition of the crow, black against the snow (the internal rhyme is sublime!), and the lime green plastic egg is a visual treat and sets up the reader for the following modern fable and the facts. The setting apart of the repeated ‘the egg will not crack’ emphasises the anomaly. Crows are intelligent birds. I love the chilling ending, Jim!

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  2. susanstoo

    “the best we can hope for
    is that the crow is laying down
    some kind of evolutionary marker . . . ”
    Nicely done! (And not everyone in a black coat is death.) I love how rthis ends in the voice of the crow.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
  3. Sherry Marr

    Poor crow, bewildered by human folly. I, too, love the crow speaking in the closing stanza. I really enjoyed this, Jim. Though the number of years plastic survives is a disturbing fact, a point well made in this poem.

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    Reply

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