the Price of Vanity

As enticing colours gradually change,
forming a beautiful, splendorous range,
of magnificent reds, oranges and golds,
when at the horizon the sunrise unfolds,
a summer breeze playfully tugs at the trees,
as if trying to awaken them with silent pleas,
wanting them to witness the colourful display,
created by the birth of a clear summer day.

Hidden in the shade, underneath a birch tree,
sits a grey bird, consumed with envy,
"Why?" does it whisper in disdain,
"Is the morning so colourful, am I so plain,
these colours are but momentarily,
while if I was to wear them permanently,
instead of that common colour grey,
I would fly around and all would say,
what a beautiful, colourful bird that is,
they would all be in awe of my colourful bliss".

The grey bird drifts on the waves of its dreams,
when all of a sudden, at least so it seems,
it stares into two shiny, green eyes,
of a huge black cat, that speaks while it smiles:

"You dumb grey bird, where was your head,
you could have flown, but no, instead,
you sat here caught in your own vanity,
wasting your life with wanting to be,
your envy has made you an easy prey,
it cost you the highest price one could pay",

As the cat struck the bird down with it's claw,
the sharp white fangs were the last things it saw.

Clautje West 2001