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Word Acts: The Crow, American

Lawrence Willson brings a word-portrait of the crow, a bird never seen alone.

Stands large at 43-53 cm
all black, stocky, stout-billed
fan-shaped tail

Strong communicator
the loud caw - caw seems
understood by other crows
(books say) half-mile away yet
capable of cooing and cawing
between one another
on intimate matters

Sheer appearance up close
can be intimidating
(as any intimacy)

Nests 4-6 eggs, blue-green to olive-buff
with brown, gray blotches; feeds on: anything
if largely vegetable matter, same from the deck

Hide from these your shiny baubles
as they can become
for a good cause
on occasion
thieves

I’ve never seen one alone
mostly in flocks, now and then
two by two
like hippies

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