Dialogue with a Dead Beaver
I did not know what you were
in the tall weeds until I saw
the incisors in your jaw and what
remained of your paddle of tail.
Black, all black, even your bones.
In my weeds by the road I am black.
I wanted to believe that a hundred
yards down the road from the spot
where you were hit, a car swerved
straight into a deep ditch,
felled by a gash in one of the tires.
You want to believe I kill what kills me.
I wanted to say that your smell
was the smell of rich, black earth
from which a miraculous tree
would grow someday, a tree that
would grow again and again
endlessly as it was endlessly felled.
My smell is black. My flies are black.
—J. R. Solonche