Living Midair    poems by Karen June Olson April 2019

Living Near the Edge

From the window I watched
a hawk take down a mourning
dove. Its mate perched still:
a stone in a sweet gum tree
as hawk stripped feathers down
to skin. The tight knit sweater
released with ease over the dead
bird’s head. I looked for a single
feather. Not one remained.

That night I heard cold yips
of coyotes. Are they across
the frozen pond in shadows
of the wood or closer to the house
where the dogs bark?
I imagine their sharp mouths
drooling saliva on fur rusted
from deer kill. Shall I serve
them a bowl of stew or stalk
with a shotgun? Either way 
they watch, they gather
as I prepare to fight
for my right to sleep
or walk the wood alone.

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