You know Death by his leisure—take
The time we saw the vulture make
His slow, hot-air-balloon descent
To a possum smashed beside the pavement.
We stopped the car to watch. Too close.
He bounced his moon-walk bounce and rose
With a shrug up to the kudzu sleeve
Of a pine, to wait for us to leave.
What else can afford to linger?
The eagle has his trigger-finger,
Quails and doves their shell-shocked nerves—
There is no peace but scavengers.
Alicia E. Stallings
© Alicia E. Stallings. From Archaic Smile,