In the morning comes disorder,
fresh magnetic sounds flooding outside
my window. In the meat
of a forty-foot Blue Spruce are
battle cries, and
birds suddenly begin to rain down in chase,
black, blue, and white, like a paint palette tipped
I step outside, walking and watching,
something pulls my eyes to the ground;
fallen at my feet,
gasping for life,
lies a magpie with
fuzz on her head.
She’s soft, scintillating,
Not a tiny bird,
likely a teen,
pulsing white chest,
eyes clamped and twitching next to my shoe.
The shouts from the others are now
across the street, near Gabriel’s yard, high in
Cottonwood branches, six or more of her magpie clan
death-taunting a broad-bodied ebony crow.
Her tribe surrounds the outsider,
taking off across the sky in pursuit, stabbing, biting,
still ranting for their form of justice.
Back on the ground, only seconds have passed,
all the time necessary for
her to have finally stopped breathing.
A quietness presents itself.
For a moment I consider a burial, but she’s already under her home,
under the shade of the spruce.