Luck, a Birthday Poem

The birds are making a nest of me
out there, from all the hair I’ve lost
to my hairbrush and rug, bits of skin
and grey fuzz from my skirt too —
and everyone tells me
this doesn’t look good.

Am I shedding because it’s winter,
or because, as the Bad Luck Astrologer says,
Now at twenty-nine I’m finally completing
my first full twirl around the moon?
I think it must be both.

I should have known better then to test
my weight on that cold limb, should have

known better than to buy you
new shoes. All night they danced
around the house and just before dawn

tapped like a black moth
right out the door.
And all night

I brush my hair like a nearly dead plant,
letting the brown fall from its hard root
until it sings
like a sharpened knife
with its one sprout
of new life.