“Aviary” @ Verse Daily

Untitled (Aviary)











I’m pleased that Verse Daily has chosen my poem “Aviary” to be the poem of the day today!

The piece is an ekphrasis based on a well-known box that the great American artist Joseph Cornell made in the 1950s.


after Joseph Cornell

The box’s safe: the cockatoo must be singing.
Sound comes through in waves (concentric
circles radiate like super/sonic
powers portrayed in comic books), so the two
metal curlicues spiraling on either
side of its head must be the tinny notes
of its song. If a bird exotic sings in a box
would anyone hear it? Come close.
Cup your ear to the glass. A bird in a box’s
worth two in the bush. Perched on a dowel,
the caged bird sings: because it’s safe, because it’s sound.

~ by Michael Leong on March 3, 2010.

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