Laton Carter

the starling

is not American.

All industry, its call
grinds as metal grinds

in wood, the auger of its beak
pressing back earth for the grub.

The native nest is lost
to its metallic sheen, the iridescent

spangled feather.
It leaves its slag

in the thousands, vulgar star
pulsing in the city.

Once introduced,
mercurial is its success.

The face in the sky, not God, but the pilgrim.

Winner of the 2017 Winter Anthology Contest