Cardinal

Surely he has mistaken
the sinking moon for an awakening
splash of sunlight.
Scarlet in royal garb, he commands
as only a monarch can.
Never mind that the dark seems to
have erased him entirely.
His voice alone brooks no opposition.
Its pronouncement
isn’t merry; he is not trying to woo
the heart’s response.
Rather, a squeaky gate that bangs,
as far as sound travels,
complete dominance is proclaimed.
A comfort perhaps
to his queen and their hatchlings,
he goes off like an alarm.
This bombastic braggart at 4 a.m.
must think, ad nauseam,
that he sings pretty, pretty, pretty.
Who am I to disagree;
a tuneless serf, I dare not rebuke
his confident majesty.

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