The Simplest Geometries
Wild turkeys browse in the yard.
Their teardrop bodies look solid;
their tiny heads and feet work
the ground so briskly not a grub,
insect, or kernel will survive.
They cast shadows thick enough
to prevent the tatters of snow
from thawing. Toms in full display
stagger with the effort of fanning
their feathers in sun-shaped arcs.
Busy feeding, the hens ignore them.
Tomorrow I’ll have to clean the yard
by running a wet-dry vacuum
tethered to the house by a cord
fifty feet long. Years ago I dreamt
of hanging myself with that cord.
I looped it around a gargoyle
on the façade of Notre Dame
and swung myself above the tourists
crowding the Ile de la Cité.
Why did I awaken so refreshed
by what should have been a nightmare?
The grim sensation of smirking
over the plaza while treading
nothing but sky still lingers
with an air of accomplishment.
The turkeys will loiter all day.
They aren’t afraid of me. Their shadows
reorganize the April light
into the simplest geometries.
Their appetites steer them here
and there over tiny plots of earth
they own for as long as they can feed.
The glory of their presence costs me
only a few handfuls of seed.