i saw you at eight
and again at six,
your fur blood-matted,
eyes like ice,
your grimace greeting
the traffic, speeding
to places where
slaves while away
their days and
nights in cages,
swallowing rages.

i wonder if they
ever felt the rush
or risked the risk
to bolt between
those metal monsters
on instinct alone;
i wonder if you
took some satisfaction
in those errant tracks in
the roadside grass and
foolish fear of
the human heart.
sleep well, my friend.
the buzzards will wait
until rush hour ends
and traffic thins, when
the sun isn’t watching,
then pierce your skin
and take you home,
piece by piece.


This poem originally appeared in the 2009 collection Sixty-Six.