Heart Sutra

The clicking and burbling of starlings:
otherworldly, haunting, alien calls
the foreign chatter of outsiders
brought to this land from an other place, released
left to fend for yourselves or die trying
why do we resent you your resilience?
single you out, pests,
to be relocated, blocked, removed
do we fear what is different from us?
When the exterminators come, do they see
how the light dances across your purple armor
sparkling, iridescent in its glow
the breathtaking sheen
of hundreds of shimmering specks of gold
catching the light
do they notice and feel ashamed?

I have seen you.
At dusk each evening when the fog
of the day’s heat falls away
you arrive promptly to the nest
moth fluttering in the grip of your beak
the hungry chipping of your young
and then a brief moment—I swear
I have seen it. A moment of recognition
for the sacred gift of that moth
and I join you in this: gate gate paragate
parasamgate bodhi svaha
but most of all the brilliant consistency of it!
shall I ever witness anything
more miraculous?