Mudlark No. 58 (2015)

Woman and Alligator

          A Port Charlotte woman hit an alligator in her Honda Accord and tried to save it.
          But she crashed when the 6-foot reptile began to thrash around in the backseat.
          She was charged with possession of an alligator, a felony in Florida.
                                                    —Tampa Tribune

She probably said Goddammit and Motherfuck
and braked.  She says she got out and grappled 
with the scaly Crocodilian before she thought. 
She’d been singing along with Ashlee Simpson,
but hefting a 6-foot reptile into a Honda says 
she was one big Floridian. She drove on
with the beast on a beach towel in the back.

When it came to, and bared 80 teeth and whip-
thrashed its squamous tail, woman and alligator 
spilled across lanes like a tourist.  She stopped
and a Florida State cruiser rolled up. The cop 
would have given her a ticket and foregone
the lecture and handcuffs but, no, she had to
start in kicking, swearing at its Zen stillness,

saying she hadn’t graduated FSU for this shit.  
And what of the gator? They coaxed it out,
tossed a McNugget in the desired direction.
Toward water, away from I-4’s roaring stream
of truck traffic. It waddled off, a pretty bad
song about the wreck of postmodern love 
running, looping through its reptilian brain.

Roy Bentley | God’s Circus at Its Wintering Grounds in Florida
Contents | Mudlark No. 58 (2015)