Deck door creaks, then squishes closed.
Ankle’s eye view is all that’s granted as,
slipshod, slipper-shod, he shuffles over.
Tonight? We’ll see.

Hooded yet, I feel the tickle of mouse feet,
signaling its leaving, its leavings
a part of once and future meals.
Unseen? We’ll see.

Undraped now, I stretch, yawn, maw wide.
Fresh fuel courses the chill and empty veins.
I hiss, bleed briefly; then spark fully awake.
Warming to task.

Steel marrowed bones, unkempt, charred black
from too much use, too little care,
prepare my brand, sear stripe.

Pale, pink pocked, round, and soft,
they arrive — my evening’s guests.
Smooth skin now scarred, scorched.
Lethally? We’ll see.

Marked, I bid them ‘adieu’. Innocents no more.

What Is

Carrion eaters circle
hawk’s epicentre;
Talons in fresh kill.20140303-170709.jpg

Winter’s best for teaching.

My shadow slips, ripples over rough ground.
Leaps, in a single bound to roof top,
then scrabbles, up trunk, settling beneath me
on a chosen branch, grey, leafless, waving a greeting
as I light — then stilling. As do I.

They scatter, like so many pins.
Struck by instinct, reflex, flock-think,
sheltering (in vain) in Winter naked Bittersweet;
dried and withered fruit, rust and rotting,
all that remains of Summer’s sanctuary.

Movement becomes my friend.
They twitch and flutter back, reassured by numbers, easy grain;
light’s trick, sun’s flicker gone now from consciousness.
But what’s to see? Sharp, gold-rimmed eye
– if they’d dare look up. I wink (back) and watch.

Sun curtained, I hunch, arch, and slide, chute straight.
Tethered by taut focus to a single one,
chosen to receive my freeing gift.
Awareness, short-lived, explodes.
And all is still — again.

Do you judge? They don’t.

Carrion eaters circle
hawk’s epicentre;
Talons in fresh kill.