there’s a bluebird in my heart.

There’s a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but the world is too dark for him.
I say, stay in there, I’m not going
to let the world tarnish you.

There’s a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I feed him envy and sips of disdain
to quell him
and the people on the street and my family
and those I’ve held closest
never know that
not indifferent.

There’s a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but the world is too bleak for him.
I say, do you want to blow
my cover?
You want to be told you can’t
You want disappointments and

There’s a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I’m too scared, I only let him out
at night sometimes
when I’m writing poetry.
I say, I know you’re in there
to give me
Then I put him away
but, he’s still singing a little.
In there, the world cannot get to him
we go to sleep together with
knowing that
the world
would be a better place
if I weren’t afraid to
let him
It’s sad enough to
make a soul
weep, but I don’t
weep, should

Sorry, Bukowski. But you were scared, too.



This poem was inspired by the Video of the Week for 7.27.2011 at The Turnstiles Review. I wondered to myself if it is okay to cherish a poet but still see faults in their work, in their hearts. No one is perfect, right? We can challenge our heroes, and heroes they will still remain.


55 thoughts on “there’s a bluebird in my heart.

    1. Well, this is possibly the poem I hold dearest in my heart – the original, that is. I’ve got a brief “about me” on my Contact Me page but the best I can tell you is I’m just a girl with a bluebird, is all. πŸ˜‰

  1. im thinking too much to make any explanation on this one. but yes we all are too afraid to let our blue birds out…having fear like Bukowski. And I thought I was cynical hehe. Love the poem. Makes me think like a madman.

    1. This, too, is a beautiful poem and I appreciate you sharing it with me. Do you mean the poem was written under a bridge, or you’d sit under a bridge and read from a book…? You’ve made me curious. Also thank you for your encouraging thoughts on mirroring, as I agree with you. It’s not about cheating or thievery but building on someone else’s foundation to see if it holds.

      1. The poem was on a poster — it was printed above a drawing of someone spreadeagled on a hill looking up at the stars. Someone had pasted two copies of it to an embankment next to a walking path that went under a bridge.

      2. Okelle, that is incredibly intriguing to me. I feel like this image will float around in my mind for a while. Thanks for sharing with me. πŸ™‚

  2. Hmm…like both poems. Different smokes for different folks. I like both beginnings, prefer your middle (but the world is too bleak for him…In there, the world cannot get to him), and prefer his ending. But I gave you an exceptional for taking on a poem in this manner–very gutsy and you pulled it off πŸ™‚

    1. Did I really? I’ll admit, it felt a little blasphemous calling out my favorite poem of all time but if I pulled it off – oh, my head may be too big for my shoulders right now. πŸ™‚ Your feedback is always so helpful. Thank you, sir.

  3. we all have “bluebirds” in our hearts. i find myself drawn to this line:
    “we go to sleep together with
    knowing that
    the world
    would be a better place
    if I weren’t afraid to
    let him

    …always the hardest thing to do.

    1. Leo, I think I was in a play by that same name in elementary school, or at least it was called The Nightingale. I guess I should just let him out and see what happens. πŸ˜›

  4. You did wonderful with this and I greatly admire you for taking the chance to allow your own bluebird to fly.Fear is nothing more than not letting yourself live and learn.Best wishes and thank you for sharing this,your own bluebird πŸ™‚

  5. Bukowski, one of my heroes too, a hero with flaws and that’s what makes it more human. πŸ™‚

    and this is a worthy take on his poem, i enjoyed it immensely.

  6. Fantastic write! I suspect that many a folk hide away their bluebird lest it be mistaken for a new dish for KFC….

  7. Lovely thoughts! I believe each one of us has a bluebird in our hearts – wanting to fly into freedom. Perhaps one day it might break free, if we allow it to, wont we?

  8. I really enjoyed this one. There are so many unexpected turns of phrase, and just when you think it’s going to even out and go conventional, you throw in a line or two that tweak it back to startling. Well done!

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