Emerald parakeets

People theorise you are a family

built from the lost and found,

birds left to rattle the bars of their cages

until they bend and they are able to rend

their emerald images against the sky.

You have become a constant,

glimmering as the earth warms

and your treetops flourish into the tropics;

the canopy, a stage for your wandering voices

echoing off hills and rising apartment blocks.

I have heard you morning and night,

waking with the sun and calling each lover,

friend and all of your kin, home,

to settle in the thick leaves which camouflage

the jewels hidden in your feathers;

jewels I have seen when you shapeshift

through the air,

from bird, to magic, to emeralds

pulled from the ground to fly.

You have become a constant

in my melancholy, in my fear –

bright and beautiful;

a reminder that the twists and turns

of effortless flight can be mastered –

I could soar as you do from a bird,

to magic, to an emerald

turning the blue sky green with envy.

Photograph & poem: © Kristiana Reed 2019

Between the Trees UK

Between the Trees US

Available internationally

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