by: Jennifer Taylor

They looked like black leaves
congealed on pavement, or blood—
the way they pooled—glistening, opaque;
and the magpie—
nearly alone, towering over the wreckage
of a sparrow—
hole pecked into its skull.
Yesterday, a boy stood at an altar in the Carolinas.
His black robes gathered in folds on the carpet,
iridescent in the light thrown from stained glass.
He had water dripping from his hair,
deadpan eyes.