Lake Anonymous

Prologue

This story arrives
on the back of a coyote
seen running through the woods
near where we used to swim.

This story contains
no words, only the texture
of fur and tracks on dirt
and debris

from howls
that got tangled up
in a pack
of whispers.

A picture book
unfolds before us:

This is no folktale,
no myth, no picaresque
anecdote, nothing but a rogue
silhouette cast in stone.

Then a muted crumbling
of crunchy architecture.

Epilogue

Her personal alarm
pierces the man’s pride.
A lone song dog
without a territory,

he opens his mouth.
The quiet rings
false across his lips.
A vegetarian for 35 years,

he would gag
on her promises
if she let him
get that close.

Tributary

named after a lake
named after a girl

strong coffee in a glass
vessel after beer tapped
from a wooden cask

cold rain at night
after a wintry mix all day

the beat of a drum
filtered through leaky
headphones after all that silence

on the other side
of a retaining wall

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