Bird Watching

The bus terminal
in San Pedro Sula boasts
a large flat-screen television
and clean white floors;
Discovery Channel is playing
on mute.

A shrike—butcher, in Latin—
has skewered a lizard
on the red barbs of a thorn tree.
The guard’s black braid, the patterned
white and gray of her uniform
could almost be mistaken,
at a distance, for the bird’s feathers.

Is it the days of travel,
or does her hand move
towards the holster at her hip
as she watches the bird
on the screen overhead
eat the lizard’s eyes,
then tongue, skin?

The shot changes—
colorful, genteel birds fill the screen
as a herd of passengers enters
the terminal and the guard
returns to work. I keep watch
on her hands.

Theodosia Henney is a Pushcart Prize-nominated queer whose poems and flash prose have appeared or are forthcoming in over a dozen publications, including RHINO, Grey Sparrow Journal, Fifth Wednesday, Vestal Review, Ozone Park, and Dirtcakes. She recently returned from several months of living out of a backpack, and is profoundly excited at the prospect of having shelves again.

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