You can't tie flame to a blade of grass,
you can't tie a fin to a spinning wave,
you can't tie a griffin to an apple-tree.
This I should have thought
as I was putting a chain
on the speckled neck of a griffin
to sell him next day at the market.
The griffin squawked, sobbed the whole
night and then ceased. I went to the yard:
he was torn apart, the bird
wrenched itself out of the animal
who was now lying dead,
curved around the gouged tree,
his pupil floating in blood
gazed at me steadily.
I heard a ruffling noise –
the bird sat above my head,
its plumes still glued together
as if carved from sappy wood.
I offered the bird some seeds,
it pecked my palm and soon
on its dried-up feathers
flew into the rising sun.
So perished the sky-spotted griffin
and my profit of sixty bitqu,
but at least I can rot here and know
that my soul can wrench out, too.
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