An Unclaimed Feather on the Breeze
“I had a name once; gifted by my people.”
A girl to young to be so grey.
Weathered eyes of the desperate misting over.
Owlish ignorance for who she could be.
Thoughtful tilt of a face to round with innocence.
Youthfulness that could only belie a deep wisdom.
Only a name could mark her history.
Something cozy like the sun’s warmth.
Sounds the nightingale wove together.
It was as sweet as nectar.
No mouths left to shape the delicate syllables.
A small, gentle hand so well versed in the letters.
Flowy and loose, swooping left to right
only faint traces now remain.
Not even she can recall the lost etchings of muscle memory.
It was not the name of the legal sort
rather an endearment signifying care.
“What a precious thing to be called.”
Special and unique spreading light through flight.
She would wield it like it was capable of something magnificent.
Something like honor or protection or pride.
All she is and ever was represented by a few measly inflections of air.
The book of her tired, worn person wrapped up in sounds.
If not a single human, not even herself, can recall her name
where does that leave her in the record?
Is she left to float away? Does her existence cease to be?
Those of intimate knowing long gone
leaving no one to call it aloud.
Forced to rely on her adaptability
for a lonely, cold survival.
Not a soul to believe her sad tale
with a fate so decrepit and twisted.
My little dragon fly skimming the water.
She now leaves only a whisper,
“I’m sure you would’ve loved my name.”
Emily Wolff is in her last year of graduate school studying for her M.A. in literature. Once she finishes her M.A., she plans to go on to receive a PhD and MFA in creative writing. Emily is currently working to finish illustrating her first children’s book with the hope of getting it published. She has come to find that it is therapeutic to express herself through poetry.