wednesday, may 12

it's after 12:30; i'm sitting on
the steps of the united church of christ
a few yards away charleston street is closed
the city, deep in some project full of pipelines
has gouged a long trench down the middle
wind is tearing at the yellow safety tape
around parked equipment while a purposeful
large raccoon crosses the intersection with 10th
and orange lights flash on striped barriers
resembling sawhorses in construction.

a few nights ago i was at home and the younger dog
set up a racket in the front yard
turned out he had something treed;
we took a flashlight and found only
a tiny coon, high up in the branches
(who soon enough disappeared)
rather than the mountain lion
the gossip of neighbors had
led us to half expect.