Rogue Parakeets

Rogue parakeets in our neighborhood 

Chatter like Pentecostals,

Flash from tree to tree:

A wayward pet store shipment,

An accident in Customs,

A dying widow’s friends set free?

Like that painting by Audubon:

Carolina parakeets posed in magnolias,

Faces bright with human joy.

Their voices ring in our crushing August sun,

Dance through the knife air of December –

How to exist here, or anywhere,

So cheerfully fragile, so dangerously alive?

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