Dead Gray Bird

My ears heard it last week.
And my eyes widened,
and my pupils dilated with fear unconsciously.
Ice shards crystallized instantaneously through my heart.
My trachea and esophagus spasm-ed, shuddered.
My lungs steeped in warm saline.
Sodden tea bags, flavor faded and washed from the desiccated leaves.
My ears heard it,
but my brain refused to believe it.
Override. Override. Override.
Not until yesterday did my neurons register and process the horrific information.
And I know
and understand now
what my skin felt last week.
Damn my brain for stupid optimism
and silly idealist notions,
no better than thimbles.
It's my heart that has kept me safe and alive.
My heart that feels the struggle in fingertips, earlobes, knees and lips.
My heart that deciphers, in an instant, heart beats like Morse code.
My heart that tries to warn me with arrhythmias that make me cough.
My heart that adds, 3 + 8 and verifies that, no, they don't equal 13.
Verifies that the shine in my hair is no longer beautiful.
Verifies that it is increasingly blinding and migraine inducing.
It is my heart now that must bleed, while my bumbling brain watches.
Giant thumbs that cannot peel the covers off the bandage adhesive.
A loathsome dog,
my brain,
all teeth and paws...
Disappointed that the fragile gray bird no longer flies,
but lies limp on the ground.