Letters to Bernadette

Bernadette,
the barn swallow hums
in its freckled shell
I’ve watched swell for weeks
in the muddy cup.
I’m close enough
to hear the eruption
and expect I’ll write you again
when they’ve hatched,
as the pale tufts sprouting
from the bald heads
above wide yellow beaks
needing growing into
will be something
to note, I’m sure.

Bernadette,
the dotted face
of the quincunx, upright
still on the table
from the game last night,
signals half of how many
bodies were found
this week in the desert,
a number I’m scouring
the news for but can’t
come up with a hit.
Another dozen gallons
of water slashed too,
this time on camera,
K said in her note
sent tonight from Arivaca.
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