They’re not usually harmed
just a slight stab or maybe
a shock if the spikes
are electrified.
It’s not just the agony
but the indignity
like when you
step on a cactus or
touch a live wire.
It won’t kill you
the first time but
there’s just so much pain
a pigeon can take
before she breaks.

Gene Twaronite is a Tucson poet and the author of six books, including two short story collections and two juvenile fantasy novels. His first book of poetry, Trash Picker on Mars was recently published by Aldrich Press.