Vacant lot poem

Poem I’ve been working on today. Thanks, Burien Senior Writers Workshop for helping me with it today. Probably needs more tinkering but so far so good.

SHADOW OF A RED-TAILED HAWK

inscribes circles on the vacant lot,
over dry brown ferns, thistle,
dock and yarrow, fireweed
and Queen Anne’s lace, heavy-seeded
grasses, cabbage moths, crickets,
a wary field mouse, its black jewel
eyes upturned. A man and woman sit
in a discreetly rented car parked
in what was once a driveway
of a modest home his parents lived
within before the war, before the fire,
before the relocation. Nothing left
but desolation, the woman reaches
for his waiting hand. He sighs.

The red-tailed hawk turns, plummets
down upon the mouse. A heartbeat
passes. Rustle in dry grasses. Rush
of wings. The woman lifts her gaze.
And though she knows it should not,
when it comes his kiss surprises her.
And in an instant loss swoops,
talons bared upon the pair. The man
and woman grapple with immensity
as moments pass. She smoothes
her skirt. He starts the car. They drive
away already late in getting back
and going nowhere. The sky is empty
as a stolen love, lifeless as a memory.

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