Something Hungry

used to wait near the edge of our driveway
next to the right-of-way fence. It gobbled 
up anything our cat didn’t eat.

There are scratches in the screen
above the limestone step where previous 
owners placed a crystal bowl.

We removed that altar to scrape
our plates next to the highway
hill, hoping only to spare

the porch door more gashes.
The feeding continued.
Never a scrap left.

At the edge of the woods, I dragged
a 25-pound grass carp clocked 
by a zealous heron peck.

The next day we found five scales—
wampum scattered purple and pearly.
Not even a bone remained.

All the deer who come here
to die, riddled with ammo
or mauled by the traffic,

never last a week as carcass.
Something chews and pulls
all flesh from the ribs, gnaws

at remaining jaw.  Why, this spring, 
has wild hunger paused? Fancy Feast 
curls dry in the grass,

slicks to paste after rain. Only maggots
thrive inside cast off bits, wriggle
new dance from the ruins.