Tomorrow I will ask my mom where the dead bird went
who has lain on the upper deck for maybe three days
but probably more, because when I found
the sodden thing and told her, she
laughed, embarrassed, and said
she doesn’t know how to move it.
She is afraid of birds, especially crows.
If I lift my eyes over the railing the sun is splashing
amber over the Rockies, deep purple land
studded with late summer pines, yes,
we are the lucky souls.
And then dinner is ready to be eaten, and then the post-dinner
sunset pictures must be taken, and then the Friends
re-runs must be watched with dogs snuggled
drowsy into the blankets.
Everything is as it should be
except for the fact of the dead bird on the upper deck,
but mourning such things,
such inevitable truths,
that all small and delicate things will one day
by our haunters, no warning but
a whisper that sets the aspens quaking,
no justice for that which is never named.
Such things would disturb the evening routines
and mustn’t be discussed in such a place of beauty.
Rebecca Otter is a queer writer from Wilmington, North Carolina. She is a poetry editor and designer at semicolon literary journal and hopes to become a professor someday. You can find her work in X-R-A-Y, Instant Prose Journal and Atlantis Magazine. Keep up with her on Twitter @jinglebex.