Poet Chantal Maillard responds to last year’s announcement by the Madrid City Council that it will exterminate Argentine parrots in the city.
They’ve decided to exterminate the little green parrots
Say they rampage and residents complain.
Say they displace the sparrows.
That they spoil the trees in the park.
That they multiply too much. Say
That the lethal gas they’ll use
Complies with animal welfare law.
My animal has decided
to exterminate humans.
Says they scare other animals.
That they rampage by day and don’t rest at night.
That they chop down and burn the planet’s forests.
That they multiply and destroy
ravage and plunder the land that isn’t theirs.
Says it has decided to exterminate
humans who don’t know how
to coexist with wild boars in its parks
and doing so will comply
with natural laws.
I, in order to please it
will breed boar shoats in the orchard of my hands
ophidians in my bone-house
and bats in the cave of my eyes.
I’ll breed little green parrots.
And splendorous crows that at dawn
wake it up as they used to do
in the forests of Goa.
Translation from Spanish: Julie Wark.