The Captive Boy And The Unwinged Biped Wings broken we collapse on warm basalt hearts pumping under iridescent blazing ocean scapulars.

we still colour the skies of the nicobar isles and follow the currents sea and winds one storm thousand years ago we swirl loop low

for nights wings broken we collapse on warm basalt hearts pumping under iridescent blazing ocean scapulars upper neck

plumage wrenched in salt water metallic green copper hackles dead short and white tail twisted i lift my small blackish beak my strong legs

and feet dull and bleeding bright my irides dark my pigeon eyes flutter blurred sunlight i breathe many cannot a few of us

survive we grow walking aves for millennia seeing colour bipeds like us come and go until we hear for the first time from ships

mauritshius amsterdam hollandia duyfken pale hunters of trees of sky of ancient visitors of us we remember a sun kissed boy break free from

the hold takes refuge deep inland he runs until wind stops to whistle he knows he reaches dense woods at tranquil rivering streams

bwapom leaves fandia ferns crunch he slows down listens our shrieks on ground in branches on dark wood in air on water in exile

unfree fugitive he grows strong and tall and speaks in tongues and tones away from those who poison land

his mothers name was not simon ours was not dodaar

Gitan Djeli is a UK-based Mauritian writer and researcher. She is currently an Art History Fellow under the Indian Ocean Exchanges Program, Harpur College, Binghamton University and the Getty Foundation. Her poems appear in Poetry, adda, Silver Pinion, and Parentheses Journal among others. Her work has been anthologised by Commonwealth Writers.

Cover Image: Wilhelm Gunkel on Unsplash.