Another Pastoral

What, this shit again? Another long plunge down
the honeysuckle’s throat, another big-eared bat
caught in the vestibule, plastered to the pleated drapes
and shooed to freedom with the straw-bare broom?
Another electric arc of bluebird flight, more flood, more
drought, more casts of doily light on the forest floor,
more cicada wings chaffing toward tinder and flint,
and fire, always more fire? Again the river gnaws
at the cutbank, produces a curtain of lovegrass roots, again
the early-born calf’s tail freezes to the earth, and again
we take the hacksaw to it so she might live. Again the hawk
snatch-lands and pins the rat snake to the fence’s barbs
and eats that way, in peace, without having to suffer
its coiled writhing, again and again. Tell me, why not?
Tell me our species matters more, tell me that, and I,
I will crawl back, hold your face to the soil, and show you
what we’re fighting for.

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