by Dan Gerber

A hundred quail on the grass outside my window,
and the dogs are a little upset,
and at least one hundred doves
bandtailed pigeons in the tree above,
and one crow complaining for all he’s worth,
about the world as it is right now.


I had a conversation with a coyote,
ambling along the road at dusk
while I was driving home last night.
I rolled down the window
and asked what kind of a day he’d had,
and he just shrugged.
Or I thought he shrugged.


Later, as I walked
near a thicket of brooding young oaks,
a startled owl flew up
through the paler darkness of moonlight,
and the trailing feathers
of one of its wings
brushed my busy life into silence.