Instead of being tempted by the allure of carefully chosen peacock goodies, the peacock took up residence on top of the cage. He slept there for the rest of what must have been the mating season, then left as suddenly as he had appeared, leaving only a yard full of tail feathers. We have never seen him again.
THE FERAL PEACOCKRegally he paces into view --
step, then pose, then step --outside our room,
small imperious head with swept-back plume
balanced on its column of shocking blue.
He wears his wedding raiment, trailing train
or iridescent satin, feathered sheen
of circlets -- emerald, sapphire, turquoise green
on shifting bronze and gold. We tap the pane.
His strident outcry penetrates out walls,
pierces our minds, awakens memory
of gothic tales, estates that used to be.
What is it he demands with raucous calls?
His hens? He was alone when he appeared
and claimed our unkempt yard, small urban stage.
Wide lawns of empire lost, another age
when he could strut and preen and never feared
the thorny vines that strip each nether quill?
Shrill, he summons his retinue. Who comes?
We lean past garbage pails and toss him crumbs,
sole loyal subjects who obey him still.