BIRD

Great-Tailed Grackle Bird

Quiscalus Mexicanus
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Genus: Quiscalus
  • Also known as Quiscalus Mexicanus
  • Also known as Devil Bird

The Devil Bird haunts the southwestern states, Mexico, and for reasons known only to Satan, Nova Scotia, Canada. It seems appropriate that the Devil Bird has recently invaded Death Valley, California; but it’s curious that it has set its sights upon more northern states, such as New Jersey. Its habitats include parks, towns, fast-food restaurants, and mall parking lots. It feeds upon grain, garbage, insects, pecans, eyes of people who have wronged it, and nestlings of other birds. Its open-cup-shaped nest is often filled with discarded items previously belonging to humans: tissues, tarot cards, chopsticks. The male Devil Bird looks crow-like, except that it lacks the crow’s grandeur and profound association with Poe, causing deep insecurities. Its plumage has a lovely blue-upon-black sheen, similar to an oil slick. The female Devil Bird wears a dull, brownish-black coat; both sexes have yellow, pin-prick eyes.

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—Kate Hill Cantrill

Kate Hill Cantrill’s fiction has appeared in Story-Quarterly and Pindeldyboz.com. She lives in Austin, Texas.

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