David King


One of us did not belong.
I hung out the tailgate of the station wagon,
Riding down Roberts Road in summer,
Then, shot from nowhere,
It merged with the skid marks,
Made for the weeds.
We’d just missed it,
The first snake I ever saw,
And I bristled, I knew
It did not belong.

Most of them are gone now,
Though you might could buy one
Made of rubber in some tacky shop
On Roberts Road.
It’s an eight lane traffic jam now,
They’ve even changed the name,
Put everything right where it belongs.
But some nights under the putting green,
Or far below the gasoline pumps,
And even beneath the tiles of the mall,
You can sense that something’s there,
Moving, rustling, sliding away.

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