Swallow

There’s a dead bird on the ground –
a turned over nest – broken eggshells.
There’s silence, too;
the absence of song so clearly
it seems to make its own –
lifting in the wind,
slicing the clear sky with its wings.
There’s a dead bird on the ground.
A swallow.
It isn’t bleeding, or broken.
There is nothing left to fix.
Its nest is made of small twigs and gum wrappers –
the silver catches the light so lightly
and sparkles and glints.
The dead bird is whole,
except for a feather caught in the dry grass.
It’s gray and blue and looks so cold.
I pick it up and press it between my palms.
It’s summer. There’s a dead bird on the ground.
A swallow. There are broken eggshells.
A turned over nest. There are my hands.
That feather – soft and singular.
It’s summer and I’m sick with sadness
and there is nothing left to fix.

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