–or I Try to Stop Thinking About Humans
Red hornet is dead on the dashboard when I get in the car.
I honk and swerve to miss a skinny dog,
an eastern box turtle, a black snake,
an already-splattered chipmunk.
The brown sheep blares like a foghorn for feed
and handfuls of corn when I return.
A thousand no-see-ums feast on my arms and legs
in the garden, bees beside me in the clover.
Calico with a dead mole preens, self-satisfied on the stair.
Five dead chickens in the coop have no heads.
While I bury them, the chihuahua mutt barks
playful at momma deer and her fawn,
come down from the abandoned house seat
into the buckwheat field to see what we’re all about.
During the evening mile walk, cardinals on either side
of the shallow river machine-gun at each other.
Cottontails spaz and dart under the roses.
Mourning cloak butterflies sun their wings beside a mud puddle,
two turkey buzzards in a lazy coast 100 feet above.
There is tiny peeping from the Carolina wren nest greeting me
in the porch rafters. I close my eyes, head tilted
to one side, try to count how many voices I hear.