“I am just an animal looking for a home”

–David Byrne


My neighbor tells me her plum trees have black knot,

and rabbits are everywhere –

petite, non-native

Eastern Cottontails.

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

mere steps

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.