Cowbird and Robin by Cynthia Blomquist Gustavson
My Oklahoma rambler has a tornado shelter
underground with a heavy door. I ignore
weather watches that interrupt my favorite
shows until they upgrade to warning.
Before bed I glance at radar circles,
listen for the wah-whine of sirens.
and if nothing’s near, I go to sleep
Same for robberies and rapes
and even the war. You get used
to anything. Except, I thought,
a cowbird rolling robin’s eggs out
of our porch nest, baby blue shells
splattering their contents on the brick
like morning eggs in a frypan,
No good for eating, just absent
from a nest that then held a cowbird egg
tended by mama and papa robin,
and I got used to that too when I saw
the fledgling cowbird waving its wet wings,
its adoptive parents watching, warning,
gently nudging him into the world.