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Poetry #114
(published December 26, 2002)
A Marmot in The City
by Nicola Bruno

A marmot in the city seemed odd,
like bermuda shorts in a Canadian winter;
yet there it was in the tomato patch,
between the rock garden and scotch pine.
It sniffed at a San Marsano ready to be picked,
but settled for shoots of parsely.

It seemed uncertain as it ate; the new kid
in class, all our eyes on the back of its head.
Then one morning my wife noted its form
among the forget-me-nots,
I went out to inspect and it scampered
into a hole burrowed beneath our landing.

Days later our youngest complained
about an odor emanating from its lair.
The S.P.C.A. came but couldn't dig it up;
so there it lay sepulchered,
a lone carcass in its tomb. What if
others crawled inside to their demise?

I imagined that a future archaeologist
might excavate the site and think
that this primitive culture buried their pets
in a communal plot close to their hearths.

What were Neanderthals at Le Moustier
really thinking as they buried their dead
in the caves of Les Eyzies' shallow pits,
a boy's remains surrounded by wild goat horns?

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by Nicola Bruno

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Feeling A Little Persecuted
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