Preservation

We threw rice at the birds
Until their dead carcasses
Littered church yards,
The aftermath of so many
Happy ceremonies, a foreshadowing
To the broken pieces, shattered
On the courthouse steps one,
Twelve, or twenty-seven years later.

We started throwing bird seed soon after,
A bright idea to save the birds
Changed nothing to slow the traffic
Up and down the courthouse steps one,
Twelve, or twenty-seven years later.

The birds flying free with healthy tummies,
Kept wondering how to preserve
The pretty people in the white veils
And black ties.
Without the rice,
Why did so many still die one,
Twelve, or twenty-seven years later.

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