the object of
jeffrey sherfey


for Hannah Clark


No animal is
where there is
no breath,
no fear of feral mistake.

Our creature
ruts and rakes,
wades peat
hidden amidst

lizards light on
border my hard path.
Heel chafe.
A hole in
a hedge,
a heron out.
Air peels
over a lake.
The eye draws.
Animals emanate.

Our creature
a deity between
words, estranged
thing, deigns

to be seen.
A cardinal casts
its echo,
hard sound,
insistent communing.
Like in resounding land,
some shepherd,
valley dweller
beyond trade sings.
For tune
repeats in titters, as
coos hailed through
hands knit to lithesome
limbs cause
body shudders.

Whose tongue
slices up my song
to make its
laughter unnatural?

Her mouth elates.
Her contours remain.
Languid love
terrifies terrain.