in the days after

Even Mary in the hallway who is not

political and who, last year, in the planning

meeting for the office holiday party, went off

about how we should use the word Christmas and

stop worrying about other people’s feelings – even she

used the word GRIEF when I told her how

I sat in the minivan in the parking lot at CVS

weeping, while on the radio, President Obama tried

to make us feel better. The loss sat on my chest

like a crow, waiting for the sure thing, the rot to

start in my heart so he can start feeding, his cleverness

clawing my sweater, my tears glossing his dark

feathers, and beside me the groceries, and medicines,

and Mary says, yes, it is just like that. My children told

me yesterday, of course, mother, birds are carnivores, 

and they always have been, with conviction. Why

didn’t I know that? Or see it coming?

We have all been judged, it seems, and the crows

line up around the top of the office building to

and bicker, loud as ever, deliver each sentence – to

Mary, to me, and you – of the quick and the dead.





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