A Budgie Loses His Tail

A Budgie Loses His Tail








He was sitting on
my daughter’s shoulder
at her shiny silver chain
when her bright intricate hairband
caught his eye.
He moved up and tangled his feathers and tail
in the accessory.

Shrieks and yelps later
he and we relieved him–
his tail missing
and a wound.

I collected the severed tail
in a napkin and showed him
his broken turquoise quills.
He recognized his fur
stared for long and turned
to look at his behind.

Funny I look behind
all the time too
for lost pieces.

An almost ten year old
cried and felt pain for ‘other’–
She will love well.
I mean live well.


The blue bird
eats furiously,
his maxilla and
leaving nothing unmilled,
not even
his ghost tail.

How does one
bite into absence?


(The painting ‘Mario’ is in watercolor on hot pressed paper. Mario is our pet Budgerigar. He has a cage, which serves more as his bedroom. All day long he is a free bird. Like any pet, or member of a family, he brings immense joy in our lives)

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