In the mornings, they step on the rotten branches of her used-to-be vegetable garden and sneak their beaks into the holes within them; they breathe in the stench and the rot and smile. In the evenings, they stare through the cracks between the curtains of her bedroom window; they watch as she closes her eyes, and they sing her to sleep. She wonders if she should talk to them, scream at them before they devour the last two blueberries holding on to the bush at the edge of her yard. She wishes she could have tasted the berries, bitten into them halfway and waited for the juice to tickle its way down her taste buds. It’s too late now, and she knows it. Damn those crows, she says, sliding the glass door open and stepping barefoot into grass. She waves her arms at them, like a lunatic.
That’s what her neighbors call her when she’s not looking. That’s what they whisper in the mornings, what they shovel down 6-feet under their tongues when they see her. If only they would say it to her face, caw it into her ears until they bled.
She waves her arms again. The biggest crow, three feet away from her, picks at a berry and raises his head. He twists his neck until his eyes meet hers and lets out a piercing caw.
Caw. Caw. Caw.
She waits for him to stop, her hands now plastered against her thighs, her lips now shut. He lifts his head to the few clouds above her and caws one last time before flying upwards. She traces his movements with her eyes and notices how his wings turn blue against the rising sun. She never realized that feathers could find synchrony with light, blend into its rays like a non-man-made kaleidoscope. She chuckles. If only she could fly away with him.