The first moment I looked into them
Not knowing what I was seeing.
The first time I visited you at your house
It was that place in Bellwood
You came to the door, opened it four inches
Your face in that narrow frame
Your blue eyes, glad to see me,
Glance askance, attending to another life,
You said, "Bird out."
Another time, another visit, you instructed,
"If he flies at you, go down."
He did, and I did:
Spread-conure on the floor.
With February snow lying white across our Minnesota yard
I phoned you at work where the others there heard you exclaim,
"He took a bath with you!"
I have known parrot love.
El Paso, 2003.10.24