1. don’t let me down
phoebe says
in a firm tone with her finger pointed in the kitchen before she leaves
and because no on has ever taken this kindof force/ tone with me before
i like it

2. some kind of response to robin coste lewis’s ‘fable’ entry from the encyclopedia project volume two:

the caged bird sings only because someone called it that
the caged bird sings because song has been used as code
as secret
as an arrow pointing ‘this way to the underground’

the caged bird may not even be a bird for all i know

the caged bird sings because she cannot believe she made it back alive from the coalmine
and had she known the cage was coming
she would have flown deeper into the oxygenless dark

the caged bird sings same as the caged human sings
it is indeed the thing that calmed me the first time in a holding cell alone in madison wisconsin
(downpresser man, where you gonna run to
downpresser man, where you gonna run to…

the caged bird is no longer a bird

the caged bird sings because if he was talking to himself
you would call him crazy
not that the caged bird even gives a fuck
but he doesn’t want to give you the satisfaction

the caged bird
is singing
about how napolean asked
what is history but a fable agreed upon?
the caged bird is singing to tell you that i’m taking your best lines
unthreading them and trying to re-weave them for myself
it is an exercise about getting inside
rather than an exercise about stealing
like that german film (the edukators)
where the kids would break into rich people’s houses
and rearrange the furniture
but never take a thing

i made a chart
of how you went from
to slavery
to buddhism
how you said there are slaves in our bedrooms, our cars, in between the pages of this book
how you said i am a leaf that grew out of you
how you stacked
and i was determined to follow every bend

the caged bird is singing in alarm for my uterus
when i perch my computer
on my lap for hours
me foolish enough to think
that a pillow provides enough of a barrier
because the caged bird is me and i don’t want to
see me
that way

the caged bird is a mascot
for every hostage of the prison industrial complex
the caged bird
is not singing
but shrieking
because he still recognizes sky
through mesh through curtain through plateglass