Day 8: Party of Gestures





wind and spruce, that’s one
we have all attended, charmed
by the little birds cursing 
as their new nests bend askew.

but there’s this youtube video
cat and tame coyotl* now
laughing on the living room floor
that’s a party of gestures. she
the coyote, wriggling on her back
makes of her mouth a toothéd maw
and she, the calico cat, springs the trap.
over the ottoman, back through the legs
now a tail gets disembowelled; a long snout
and elegant leg sweep and fling in turn
in joyous turn, these illiterate pals
have clearly never read the memo
all farm cats and rough coyotes know
by heart, and claw and belly. no
here is a helter skelter haven 
killer moves exchanged as party.

i am reminded of the moose
who lived as a saddlehorse
up north, before my time. his story
is either about the gangling love
between a man so foolish-free as to
tame a foolish moose; or it falls
into the canon of the evil humans do
when jealousy rules. who ever heard
of a saddle moose. we’ll show him
and they did, guns like gangster guns.

then again, yesterday in the garden
the slow tick of season into spring
leaves of spirea, rhubarb crowns
hazy afternoon dancing with rake, split
silence rocks and shatters all down 
the alley, where some angry youth
slams a door, peels out, careens
away, spitting gravel. punks, i mutter
but then remember, my own brother
drove like that a time or two. i wish
this kid a better road, but the party
of gestures unfolds, and a cop car
docks, soon enough, like a hunting
coyotl, grim.
still, who’s to say? maybe
those little birds 
laugh at wind-tumbled twigs
surf the wind in their anchored nests.

So, we’re into our second week of 30/30. I’ve chosen this year to title each poem with the daily prompt, which definitely gives a randomness against which to work.

Coyotl is the Nahuatl word from which we get the Anglicized ‘coyote,’ which is variously pronounced, where I live, ca-yo-tee, ca-yote, or even the twanging ca-yoot. In this poem, read ‘ca-yo-tee’ whereas ‘coyotl’ is shorter and sharper and stops hard (with apologies to Nahuatl speakers for my accent in doing so).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s