QYQE BESNIKE / FAITHFUL CUCKOO 

That afternoon,  

singular cuckoo  

eating caterpillars  

covered in bristles.  

Metamorphosis given  

in the xhubleta of coarse  

white felt and soft feathers,  

I swallow the bitter draught, 

 

I think of the smell of needles,  

pine littering the ground, dark tar  

clutching to my insides, how can one  

person hope to grow wings from bones  

that make no room for anything but marrow?  

Mother embroidered the xhubleta with gold thread,  

she called me daughter of the sun, she let me wear  

her cuckoo spirit, she told me it means holiness.  

Bird’s nest is an earthen jar is a long forest,  

endless quest for the sense of belonging,  

out of the safe isolation created by the  

interior of a fledgling-woman’s soul.  

Sunlight burns the eyelids, scorches  

the parched throat, blinds the gaze,  

but woman-fledging cannot hide,  

should not clip her wings,  

nor tear the xhubleta,  

nor pull the thread,  

nor shrink herself  

for owl’s hunting.