The curve-billed thrasher digs the small purple potatoes
from the raised garden beds and ruins them.

He sets them back into the hollows in which they grew,
each speared neatly once through the heart.

The radishes, too, become his casualties:
red-and-white targets bull’s-eyed by a bird’s whim.

When the thrasher gets trapped in the garden shed, who wouldn’t
hesitate before opening the door and loosing him,

knowing he will return to his mischief?
We give up, then, on the garden.

Though the hot days drag on, the growing season
is already too far gone for anything to be replanted.

We fry the few yellow squash blossoms, which the bird has deemed
we should keep, and lick salt and oil from our fingers.

We forgive the bird, which is the same as we are,
trying in his own way to learn how to love the world,

every day allocating to himself
just a little bit more of it.