Threads of Life and Death

The spider's thread links
Each tree, branch, bud and flower
And shines in daylight.

A dead giant holds
Within it the living food
A woodpecker finds.

A grass-green leaf moves
Becoming a sleek tree frog
At a puddle's edge.

The aphid "rain" falls
Misting the faces of men
Watch'd by shepherd ants.

A new thread has come
In links of steel to declare
The death of the woods.


© 1999 Michael Yanega


Something in the Woods

I went into the woods again today,
Following the straight path.
A wood ant bit Shelby on the pad
And she limped terribly
Until I pulled it off her foot.

Someone had knocked the gate down -
A mute protest. (It wasn't me, but I understood.)
It was still chained and locked,
Though most of it was flat on the ground,
With its cement toes in the air.

In the direction of 2 o'clock
Something moved.
Where there used to be woods so thick
That nothing could grow in their shade,
Now nothing grew at all.

Unfamiliar sunlight lit the littered ground
Being ground under powerful treads.
A brick-shaped body, with a long neck
And a drooping four-fanged head,
Rumbled through the devastation.

Fixing the image in my mind,
I watched the thing swivel and drop its jaws,
Clamping them on a pile of former trees
That will soon be lumber
And wood chips.

That was enough to see.
Clouds were moving in from the South.
Rain was coming, to turn the ruins to mud.
Busy with sniffing and peeing,
The beagles barely noticed.


© 1999 Michael Yanega


High Grass

Rabbit memories.
Plunging into sunny grass,
Daisies and hawkweeds.

Swallows winging low.
Waving with the beagle tails -
White and yellow blooms.


© 1999 Michael Yanega



The Flight of Dragonflies

In a column of light
An ancient tandem biplane
Hovers in the breezy woods,
Sunlight flickering on idling wings.

No horizontal or vertical tail,
This aircraft uses its wings to steer
With a barely visible shift of rhythm,
Diving hawklike on a hapless fly.

How many eons has this flyer ruled?
Dinosaurs have come and gone
Reflected in its faceted eyes
That now watch me walk my dogs.


© 2000 Michael Yanega


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