Sleet, Hounds, and the Horn

(after Meredith Poppy Little)

image for sleet, hounds, and the horn

Waking, viewed from this angle, is entrance. Fear brakes
into a cower, and then it quickens. We are all counting, I 
suppose. In the marrow we suffer the more here clearly.
Old throats quietly decide on the mutton. It’s what they

do. I carry a bag of chicken bones down to the bus stop,
carefully situating each tiny fragment between the lines
of the crosswalk. Terror comes down from on high, iced 
in an amber glare. You’ve never seen me eat. It’s gothic.

There’s skins scattered everywhere and gobbets of what 
seem like a sauce, only thicker. Even the buzzards object.
Over in the alleyways they’re unwilling to share a glance.
Each of them, they’re all waiting, desperate for the pitch

and a sound they know won’t be coming, but it’s coming, 
sleet, hounds, and the horn, it’s coming, and when it gets
here no one will know we took the crosscut out of town,
counting, those seconds between flash and what follows.  

Jeffrey Little | Circles and Songs About Graphs
Contents | Mudlark No. 77 (2024)