Clade Song 5 Banner
Clade Song Left

Clade Song 5

The Pterosaur

The pterosaur: a parasol, folded
                           up & broken, aerial assay
                                                               of will & bone flung,
                                                                                                   neck-twist & the winged
                                                                           arms sprawled, flail of hinged legs, Icarus
                           of the reptile-kind, prince of fallen angles
   whose knife-limbs scissor-sever air's weft
                                                               till stunned by their own up
                                                                                                    -ending, their precipitous
                                                               jagged bending, arms/legs jarred hard in one
   jammed pose: the wadded-yarn tangle of chest 
                           with beak, a balled-up being who cannot speak, faint
                                                                           trace of last flight-flutter, once-elegant arcs
                                                                                                   now piled flesh
                                                               over bones, a final tossed-off
                           indecorous heap, selvage of self the stone will keep.  O!
to be one's own unfurled I, savage and wind-wild forever!



Note:  In 1828 early paleontologist Mary Anning discovered the first pterosaur found in Britain.  Although the term "pterodactyl" still lives in the popular imagination, "pterosaur" has come to be the accepted term for all members of this winged, reptilian fossil group.  In Anning's day, "pterosaur" had not been coined.


Clade Song 5 Right
Kimberly Miller teaches writing and humanities courses at Bluegrass Community and Technical College in Lexington, Kentucky. A native of Appalachia, Miller is currently at work on a manuscript about early British paleontologist Mary Anning.  



deer moth sparrow sparrow sparrow frog spider spider spider spider spider rat rat rat rat