Wild Parrots

“Parrots might be gravely endangered in their native rain forests, but not in Orange County, where they’ve taken up residence in large flocks.” —Orange County Register

They fly in flocks at dusk,
shrill caws of mourning
echoing through the still sky.
Dozens band together
like family, fluttering
emerald and crimson.

They gather in the magnolia
trees to chew its white
blossoms, rustle
in purpling jacarandas,
tearing at petals,
their shrieks drawing
us to the curb, our children
at our sides, pointing.

Will they survive this desert,
when they are from the rain,
where they are dying,
forever? Their cries,
wails of grief, like Rachel,
who wept for her children
and would not be comforted.