Skip to content Skip to navigation

The Wishbone (The Lyric; Spring, 2016)

Authors: 
Rob Jackson
Year: 
2016
Journal: 
The Lyric

The Wishbone

Two clavicles combine to form a strut
That flexes during flight articulation,
A brace that doubles as an amulet
For divination.

The Greeks, Etruscans, and the Knights Teutonic
Waged wars that hinged on providential splinters,
Would augur outcomes carnal or platonic,
Foretell cruel winters.

White roosters were preferred for “Now or later?”,
For auspices and cock alectromancers,
Whose trade took stock as prophet and as waiter,
Split bones for answers.

Today it’s clear that superstition lingers.
We hold our wishbones dear like ancient Romans.
I trace your collarbone with spellbound fingers,
Still seeking omens.