conduct their adult business -
on a quiet pedestrian square
leaving records of their exploits there
for us, the world, posterity,
in scripts concocted out
of artifacts and chalk
(posterity in chalk...
now there's a thought), echoes
of rune and hieroglyph and gypsy sign
(and other, stranger, signs, the signs,
maybe, of races not yet born),
together with some bits of Arabic
and Japanese and bird signs - would you know?
I didn't know - until I overheard
them talking on the square -
that birds have written languages, use ciphers
left for one another in the snow:
footprints, for one;
or sticks they lay the way they build their nests
and leave for others of their kind
who understand the meanings of the codes.
To all those in the know
The lady here leaves fruits and nuts for early birds.
A child is not a purist. Understand,
that being so,
they put to use a host of artifacts
and natural bits that come their way
to push back boundaries and help the sense along.
Dolls are frequent characters in these
mixed sentences. But what to make
of interwoven sticks (a part-
made nest) and next to it (inverted)
one torn half of a straw hat, the fruit of which,
once on the outside, now repose within -
signifying eggs perhaps? And what to make
of three men circled, holding hands? Stand back,
a wider view reveals the circle is a woman's
abdomen. The men are smokers and the woman
holds a fist up to her mouth.