Black birds sleek as polished metal, black as crude oil are dominating the cityscape.

Perhaps you have missed the murder, at least two hundred strong, flying overhead. Perhaps, you have missed the pairs and triplets sitting on wires, pecking up lawns, perched on the edges of building ledges. Perhaps, you have not heard the incessant cawing. Perhaps, you have forgotten to look up from reflectors and screens and bright lights burning from the inside of your palm.

In the morning fog, the bay and sky merge into one. A white wall off on my right behind a screen of autumn organge and the burning red of a slow, cold death. Along the edge of a curving road, grey human eyes meet black crow. Metal beasts pass us, unaware of each of us. We catch one another for a brief second before the fog swallows us whole.

I nod and smile and hope the crow recalls, in the next winter, my bike, my purple hat, my quiet “ohaiyo”. I know those black eyes have the capacity to remember faces, voices, significant moments. I hope that — in the fog and bundled up cold of the quietly coming dark — I am one of them.

You are welcome to this city. Take and tear and tease apart whatever you please.


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