My daughter brings a fallen birds nest,
points at kite tails woven in with twigs
and leaves. Look! she says, and I see how
those long colorful streamers left tangled in
branches became useful again. I think of
my brother flying kites from cell to cell
looking for companionship, all the tales
caught up in between steel bars. You dont
understand the power of words scribbled
on the backs of prison request forms,
hes told me time and time again,
the difference a small offering makes.
She writes long letters to her uncle, but
I dont let her read his incoherent responses,
hes busy, I tell her. She wants to bring
the nest inside; she wants to hatch
the one undamaged egg. It doesnt work
like that, I tell her, but shes stubborn.
She fills a Ziploc baggie with warm water
covers it with a washcloth to place atop the egg.
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