From the recording Marry Me Margret
We were nomads and went where we were told and every three years you boxed your belongings said goodbye and started again. And sometimes it was good and sometimes it was bad but you always knew it would happen and sometimes that’s was all you had to hang on to.
To be a new person in a new place.
And in the Studebaker back seat I scribble my name over and over over every inch of Mary’s magic slate and curad yank them all away.
And I am Margret now not Maggie.
And when we arrive at our new home the perfect blue parakeet is already perched on the clothesline and Mom gets out the car and says, “Hi, Petey,” and that bird flew straight to her shoulder and never had a cage and never flew away and one night when Dad had not been drinking at the dinner table I pulled his pinkie and he gassed
the table a noxious brapp and Mom screamed and I screamed and
Mary screamed and Petey screeched, “How Sweet it is,” and oh god we laughed and laughed and later on when things went awful I would conjure that cherished moment and if I could lift my skirt and cut one loud.
And right after that was the Halloween carnival and crepe covered I went as a weeping willow and in my branches I built a nest that I wanted Petey to roost right in so I could win the 3-speed Huffy.
But he would not come when I called so I lured him to my room with the fennel seed that he loved so much and I was sure I could catch him inside the closet but I crushed his crown head with the top of the door and there was no flapping no fluttering he just fell to floor and died.
And Mom cried so hard and Dad got the belt and he was not buried just dropped in the trash and later I sifted through the refuse and found his coffee ground corpse and pressed it to my lips and asked for things to be right again and the neighbors cat jumped through the window and said,
“You’re not going to throw that away, are you?”
And it was a shock to hear the cat speak but I could not provide Petey’s carcass for him to devour so I said,
“He is going to God.”
And that cat just shrugged its shoulders and said,
“It’s your funeral.”
Then he shit in the sink and scampered away.