In the woods when the summer gives out

a few leaves linger

above the cyclone yellow dog,

then, deer

here.  Above a ridge – an old stone foundation,

and not even heard –

no white-tail-sprint

with yellow dog bounding

uselessly behind

so huge, eyes just filled

with oily black, only, deer



In January, the village hires a sharp-shooter

and pays him from the general fund

to cull the herd.

The talk in the coffee shop;

how to keep them away from your garden-

marigolds, ugly fences, snakeheads,

the stupid old couple that keeps feeding them –

only feeding them is helping them starve –

what the hell do they feed them –

who feeds a deer?

Talk makes it impractical

to keep all of the commandments.

The irresistible temptation

to mull over and then judge

the everyday goings-on

with palms wrapped

around a warm cup.


Deer here,

In the moment autumn will hit its middle

turning away from summer

hurtling, leaves

hopefully, off of the trees

before the spitting snow

weighs them down

to electric wire-downing mush, deer