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Jefferson Community College Website

"January 2012: Exodus" - Carlton Fisher

They call it hazing - -
the small explosions,
like gunshots,
that turn the sky black and shrill
with caws of protest.

For a week,
the crows cover the trees of my neighborhood
like giant black leaf buds,
skeletons of winter trees covered in murders,
noisy with their conversations.

The echoes of the sharp reports
chase them from the square to the park
and back again, the somber tenants of our city
refusing to vacate their stations.

The officials say
it is the heat of the buildings
that draws them in winter,
neglecting to explain
the clouds of them that fly above Public Square
in July and August.

They are the eternal shadow of the city,
the reminder
we are all carrion in waiting.