Cuttings

In the blended street
the tails of trees
lay strewn, paying
for their mistakes by giving
up their breath
like stillborn colts.

Efficient men in trucks
put their chain saws away
hoping there would be
fish for supper, not the sticks
but the better kind,
the kind hooked on long lines
and hauled up from the deep fighting
not scooped up in a writhing mass
and ground into breaded paste.

Night came.
The boy down the street
stopped practicing his trumpet.
The night bus put its aching feet up
and the houses leaned out over the street
looking to see
if the new holes in the air
meant a hard winter
or a tighter throat at caroling time.

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