[wpaudio url=”/audio/june12/Haight.mp3″ text=”listen to this poem” dl=”0″]
 
The farmers despise your kind I’m told
because you favor the nutrient-rich organs
of lambs that you devour without first killing them

and I imagine the bloodstained fur
around your pale tan mouth, black lips
and even teeth dangling a few scraps

of flesh when I find you on the side
of the road, lying across some fallen tree trunks
and branches that hold you above the ground

your body bent back on itself
and your head twisted toward the road.
The hunters who searched for you

with their pick-up trucks and walkie-talkies
all winter never found you. I had hoped
they wouldn’t each morning I saw them

when I was out walking my dogs.
There is no blood anywhere
on your golden and white fur

still trembling a little in the breeze,
no gunshot wound or arrow puncture.
Your purple tongue hangs out

as if you might open your eyes
and lick my hand as I lift you
off the logs to place you on the ground

out of sight of the road
while the snow slowly falls over us both
over the woods, over the road

covering your body with its cool, white sheet
covering my tracks as I slip back up the road
unseen in the gathering morning light.