out of the ground (20220419)

the worms don't give a shit
about getting stepped on
until after it happens

trying to escape drowning
they undulate across asphalt
from soaked grass and wet clay
only to exhaust themselves
in puddles
be picked off by the robins
who strut around like easy
pickings are a testament to their
hunting prowess
or dry out as crispy rings
stranded in the heat
too far from the moist earth
but safe from drowning at last

today the sun was out
this is not an allegory

today the sky was blue
and the clouds were puffy and white
this is not a metaphor

today the grass was green
and i avoided being a worm
and i avoided being the foot that steps on worms

an actual murder (20220415)

not many crows in the woods
ravens, yes, plenty of them
gliding overhead and honking their horns
the big black cadillacs of the sky

usually the crows
stay in town
or the edge of town
where they can grab
unattended lunches
discarded bread
anything edible that isn't nailed down

theses woods are
almost wetland
just a thrown stone's distance
from the sea

it is a surprise to see so many
an actual murder
raising a ruckus
and then we see why
a horned owl perched on
a low branch

they surround him
cawing insults and warnings
and when he flies on silent wings,
they ensure his exit is as noisy
as they can make it

the housing market (20220414)

snails are rare here

they were everywhere
in southern california
especially after a good rain
they'd exit flower beds
and rock gardens
meet up on the sidewalk
to discuss the imminent
end of the world

here it is slugs
banana, leopard,
dark black ones like oozing wet
chocolate caramels

i find a snail on the driveway
solitary
carrying his refuge
his defenses
on his back

or maybe his burden is light

he takes a trip to the grass
just in case the robins are interested
in entertaining a guest at breakfast

i look for him later
but I do not see him
a trail of glistening nail snot
he has taken his house and moved on
without so much as a "for sale" sign