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Under Taos Mountain
by Penelope Scambly Schott

Magpie Confesses Me

Tell me your sins, Tía.
(I, of course, have none.)

Magpie, I have sinned:
I married a man I didn’t love.

Did you fledge the nestlings?

I did.

And are you truly sorry?

I did what I did.

Okay, tell me another.

I hit a parked car and skedaddled.

I do that every day.

But I didn’t leave any note.

Auntie, you have sinned;
I always leave my white calling card.

Let this be your act of contrition:
Splat your words on the world
and be sure they are Honest.

Here Magpie taps my shoulder
with her holy tail.

Magpie, Magpie, but what
if I cannot promise that?

Then you are damned.

Then I am damned.

 
 
 
 

 

 
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