a literary journal published by the Black Earth Institute dedicated to re-forging the links between art and spirit, earth and society
“I am just an animal looking for a home”
My neighbor tells me her plum trees have black knot,
and rabbits are everywhere –
One stood stock still
in the alley yesterday,
between the recycle bin
and bags of fertilizer. I walked past
while it imitated a statue of itself.
Reports of discordant life
come to me
from friends in other states
– a bald eagle spotted in Riverside Park,
snowy owl standing
in the outfield.
Last week I discovered the still-bloody carcass
of a rabbit
splayed out on blue stones in the backyard.
Its skeleton in mid-run, femur, and fibula
in perfect repose
behind the missing torso – save for a rib or two.
I wondered about the hunter –
Coyote? Cat? Crows?
How the drama played out
from the steady
safety of sleep.
Later I found tufts of downy pelt
clinging to a rose bush.
It’s all there: the coming and going,
the making and unmaking of home;
Peregrines nesting on the roof
of a downtown bank, the red fox
in Gramercy Park, a dark stain of blood
seeping into soil.
Tina Schumann is a Pushcart nominated poet and the author of three poetry collections, Praising the Paradox (Red Hen), a finalist in the National Poetry Series and the Julie Suk Award, Requiem. A Patrimony of Fugues, winner of the Diode Editions Chapbook Competition and As If (Parlor City) which was awarded the Stephen Dunn Poetry Prize. She is editor of the award- winning anthology Two Countries. U.S. Daughters and Sons of Immigrant Parents (Red Hen). Her work received the American Poet Prize from The American Poetry Journal, finalist status in Terrain.org’s annual poetry contest, and honorable mentions in The Atlantic, Crab Creek Review and The Allen Ginsberg Award. She is poetry editor for Wandering Aengus Press. Her poems have appeared in The American Journal of Poetry, Ascent, Cimarron Review, Hunger Mountain Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, Nimrod, Parabola, Palabra, Poetry Daily, Rattle, Verse Daily, and read on NPR’s The Writer’s Almanac.