Don Thompson, “Out of nowhere, a snake” and “Blackbirds picking seeds from sheep scat”

Out of nowhere, a snake
plopped down at our feet,
stunned but unharmed,
slowly gathered its wits
and then slithered into the weeds.

Marked in earth tones
as if with an ancient language
only one scholar could parse,
and he died years ago,
the snake fascinated us:

a glistening mystery, a sign
that sometimes in this world,
against all odds,
it’s possible to escape any trap,
even a hawk’s talons.

Elk Hills Road 

Blackbirds picking seeds from sheep scat
have it made:  unlimited
sweet alfalfa, already half-digested,
and no need to squabble
with a scatterbrained flock…

It’s tempting to envy them
when you have to peck so hard
year after year
to crack open the kernels
in your recalcitrant mind.

But can you imagine yourself
no longer squeamish,
a self-satisfied blackbird perched
on the back of a woolly notion?
Maybe not.

Main Drain, west of Dunford Road

 

 

 

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