No Chip

This cottonwood tree
by the bosque hiking trail
is where some unknown person
tied up and left a dog.

The dog was a bit thin
so one may surmise
the person suffered financially
during the pandemic.

Though many people
are poor businessmen
and fail due to a lack
of understanding markets.

The person was kind enough
to leave a bright pink bowl
filled with water
for the dog.

Without a sign or obvious note
I was reluctant to believe
the dog was displayed for the taking
like a file cabinet at the curb.

I started to walk away
then spotted three coyotes
off to my left in the cottonwoods
headed in the dog’s direction.

Once I untied the dog
she picked up her pink bowl
in her mouth
unwilling to leave it behind.

copyright © 2022 Kenneth P. Gurney

Sunrise Practice Before Open Mic

The cottonwoods along the Rio Grande
leafed out these last three days.

Paul came across the remains
of a coyote feast—a rabbit he thinks.

Such is survival in the flood plain.
Imagine the depth of the tap roots

since the Cochiti Dam was built
preventing the river overflowing its banks.

Paul finds the cottonwood stump
with Whitman carved in it.

He stands tall, draws a deep breath
and recites new poems to the river.

A flock of Canada Geese
rise in a great flap,

while the last two Sandhill Cranes
walk the sandbar unfazed.

copyright © 2021 Kenneth P. Gurney

Nature

On Amtrak, Empire Builder, Chicago to Seattle,
a woman unwraps a newspaper cone
containing warm cinnamon almonds.
The aroma attracts the attention
of everyone in the car.

Her liberal kindness employs
a take two policy for each person.
She feasts upon fifty smiles,
stories from three willing to join her,
her view out the window.

They spot a lone coyote
sprinting across a barren space
to trigger a mass ascension
of snow geese at a lake’s edge
ice thin and crackly.

The coyote comes away
with a goose one wingbeat too slow
to escape gravity and the victory prance
that carries it home.


copyright © 2019 Kenneth P. Gurney