If You Kill The Bird…

“You’re just an empty cage, girl, if you kill the bird.” – Tori Amos

If you kill the bird
you’ll rise up every morning 
drone-like, yawning 
heart un-singing

If you kill the bird
you’ll spend your whole life mourning
yearning, wishing:

If you kill the bird
you’re dead girl, walking
empty streets through hard
rain falling:

You’re just an empty cage girl
void of poetry, unheard,
you’re just an empty cage girl
if you kill
you kill the bird.

© 2022 experimentsinfiction.com. All Rights Reserved.

Sharing with earthweal

I’ve taken a break from blogging this week, as it’s been the kids’ half-term, and I’ve also had a busy work schedule. It can be hard to find the time, energy and inspiration to write poetry. But, as this poem and song reminded me, it is so important to find that time!

Sharing with earthweal’s Open Link Weekend #142.

63 thoughts on “If You Kill The Bird…

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  1. Glorious photo, Ingrid! Reading your poem, I thought of how some people feel that there are not enough hours in the day to do the things they want to do while others are bored! May your inner bird always sing!

  2. This is gorgeous Ingrid with such vivid metaphors … O so relate.
    love you are taking a well deserved break my friend!!!
    Cruising with the kids most likely, not yourself.. enjoy.
    I’ve been rescuing a lot of birds lately here literally from Ollie..
    Now I just need to save myself.
    Love you girl!

  3. This is a gorgeous poem, Ingrid, and hauntingly reminiscent for me. Better to let the bird fly and sing. 💗 Tori is quite quotable. I love her work! 👏🏻

  4. Loved the song, which was a blast from my past. Strong metaphors run through the poem. Life is all about balance for me. I strive to give a little, take a little, hopefully in harmony. Self crucifixion not recommended x

  5. The inspiration is one of my favorites. I’ve always found that line to carry so much weight. Anyways, love your poetry and finding this here. Perfect.

  6. I love this poem so much. What i love about writing is that it waits for us, and when we need them, the words come.

  7. I’ve spent 40 years wishing I could write full time, but I have bills and eventually a house with a love that I wanted more than anything (even poetry) to sustain … Choices define us, but that’s not to say a great amount of accommodation can’t be made. Eamon Grennan said once that she had to learn how to write the poetry between the changing of nappies. We learn. Besides, there is the terror of having more than enough time to write and finding not much to say.

  8. Such beautiful depth in this, Ingrid. On a lighter note, the neighbours slaughtered and ate their cock(rooster). I miss its 6am crowing, which was a bit annoying. But everythings’s that more empty now..

  9. I know what you mean about finding the time–and the bird–for poetry, but just opening that cage door can help, even if the song is elusive. Nothing kills it more than the money machine, as Burroughs called it, and all that it takes from us to accommodate it: ““What does the money machine eat? It eats youth, spontaneity, life, beauty and above all it eats creativity. It eats quality and sh*ts out quantity.” So less can often be more.

    1. So very true, all of what you have said above. I believe it’s why we are destroying ourselves-what’s left to live for if you remove the meaning?

  10. Ingrid, I really like this poem. It is a unique way to look at what keeps us alive. An empty cage is no way to live.
    I hope your weekend as all you hoped it to be.

  11. That’s really a very nice thought of you that other than human beings other creatures also matters in this World and we are incomplete without them so we should care for them too thanks for reminding

  12. I hope the “break but no break” was good, Ingrid! There are just so many hours in a day and we struggle with prioritising.
    Beautiful write. May the bird keep fluttering its wings and we never become the empty cage. ❤️

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