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The Story of Bear and Wolf and the DreamTo Esteban R. Arellano, Jr.'s previous piece     She Tells Me This Shit Ten Years Too LateTo Esteban's next piece

Summer Of The Sparrow

“Remember the sparrows, 
their chicks--

the weight, the heaviness
hung on a thin piece of skin,
as though gravity was about to pull 
their huge heads off.
Chingados hermano, 
why did we kill them.
It wasn’t right. 

It wasn’t right.” 

I whispered,
“it was you who killed them.”

My words fluttered in the treetops,
fled across the sky 
with Raven,
with Sparrow,
rose above the clouds
and vanished into space.

“All the flies in the universe came,” he said.
“It was as though the cosmos was a billion 
dark flies 
and they collapsed 
on his head.
He was a fucking black hole 
sucking in the light
until all that was left 
was a black mass 
of pinche flies --
house flies
horse flies
gad flies
zebra flies
he chuckled.

Snake slithered up my thigh
coiled around my balls and squeezed
then raised his head
and struck my heart.

“Why bro’,” he asked.
“Why did we do it?”

I simply 

“Hermano, I was having a hell of a fuck dream.
I was on a river bank,
my dick stuck in a mud hole.
There I was 
-- Coyote -- 
fucking Mother Earth, 
my bushy tail frantically wagging.
Shit, I started laughing.
I laughed so hard I farted thunder,
shot lightening out my ass and lit up the Sky --
that’s when I woke, 
that’s when I heard them,
that’s when I smelled it.”

There was a strange poison in my veins
and I silently prayed, brother Snake leave,
but his fangs were deep in my heart
and my words were dead.

“It came from everywhere,” he continued.
“It came from Mother Earth.
I stumbled towards the barn.
Don’t know if I walked like a stork 
cuz of fear 
cuz of mota.

he was missing for three days.
All this time he was in his Chevy truck
behind the goddamned barn,
but before, 
we would always find him
with his acordion and Lonestars,
and mom and dad would ground him for a week,
but he’d be in his room sniffing glue 
-- that little fuck.”

There was a pause
then he said,
what we did
-- It was wrong.”

I wanted to scream -- 
it was you
who killed them;
but Instead, 
I just nodded. 

it was a black mass --
hanging on 
a sparrow’s neck,

All the flies in creation were there,
light was squeezed
to the other side,
and his huge, dark head
dangled from the window.
I thought any second
it would be 

A breeze fanned the windmill,
the shaft clanked,
from the brushes
a bobwhite exploded  
and shredded space.

“Why did we do it bro.’
We kept count 
until we lost track.
We hated those little fuckers 
-- remember?”

Snake, release me, I demanded,
but I had no authority over him,
and there were no words
only evening light
and the song 
of the Sparrow.

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