The Bear on its Back, Black Blooded
The bear on its back, black blooded, on haunches – it’s sunk
In black eyes of twitch and tar and far away and then near, now on its side
Split from the blow on the night road crossing mountain to mountain hurrying
Child bear, yearling, neck groans under the pinnacle of stars and eyes
The many people, chewing lips, parking cars, fat or young or thick-fingered smoking and curious
Pile up on the unlit way now hundred with siren light to watch the rich black fading life
The black eyes that speak of human possibility, of he trying to talk, was he saying – something?
The girl who did the hitting in SUV waits for the cops who will confirm she was legal and aware
It was the bear’s fault.
Never to forget, said she, that this was the first bear she’d ever seen, real, wild
She bent close and looked in his eyes, the cops came and waved her off
She suddenly weeping because cop in shock of pistol solving the death with three bullets
Crackling the finality of his pushed arm aiming black light, then waving traffic on
We drive home
She says, He wanted help and all he got was a bullet in the head.