KYSO Flash
Knock-Your-Socks-Off Art and Literature
Issue 6: Fall 2016
Haibun: 151 words


by Marjorie Kennedy

Having just filled the birdfeeders, I’ve scarcely reached my door before the pine siskens skitter back in their companionable bickering flock: each bird tiny, striped with yellow tail coverts flicking to intimidate any rivals. Small as chickadees, they are fearless: one landed on my shoulder, hopped across my back and then returned to the feeder.

One of the flock, ragged and drooping, listlessly picks at leftover seeds on the deck. The old familiar ache: I cannot save her, tiny and sick. She would perish if I put her in a box.

A large bird flies out of the tree behind me and lands on the fence top: too big for a crow with a blueish back, beautiful brown and white waistcoat and small head. I will not see the quiet sisken tomorrow. The hawk sits, waiting.

The quick twist of grief:
I adore the small sisken,
Love the hungry hawk.

—Semi-finalist, KYSO Flash HTP Writing Challenge

Marjorie Kennedy:
Issue 6, Fall 2016

MFA, MLS, storyteller, singer, professor, director, and proud mother of three.

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