Loosed from the arms of her mother
by the shame of wings, borne on blue,
feathered splendor, she watches earth
fall fast, past sycamore, linden
and pine. A farmer saw her, waved
and shook his head, said to his son:
you have to be careful—girls like
that, they’ll rise when you least expect
them, take your self-respect along
with an embroidered tablecloth
or two. How can she explain it?
Flight without tether? If this girl
knew Brueghel she might well fear flight:
The farmer threshing his wheat and his son,
just a boy, pretending not to see
a fallen flutter of linen.
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