In the first rays of day,
the rooster stirs, restless.
He grumbles a bit about
the slow rise of the sun
before he begins to crow.
The rooster is angry all day
because he never calls
as loudly as he wishes, and
he knows the answers to nothing,
except where the best bits of grubs
are kept, and which is the finest
of the hens, and why.
But at night, late, the rooster begins
to dream he is Gullinkambi,
the golden-combed rooster the height
of a horse who roams the Old Norse mountains.
The rooster has dreamt of the unceasing
crescendo of Gullinkambi’s roar
ringing in the final days of the earth.
He knows Gullinkambi would tell
whatever you want to know,
and a lot more. He knows which wolf
swallowed Odin, and who stole
what horse and when.
When morning comes again,
the rooster mutter and moans
as the day brightens. Though he
hones his spurs, and learned
a stompy dance, his stature
is in his dreams. When he steps
into the sun, he will crow every day
as loud as he can, forever disappointed.