/ /

The arrival of the evening birds and their song didn’t make a difference, nor did the slabs of white Styrofoam piled like a small thicket near the trash bins in the alley. And neither did the flash of the cat who shelters in the fortune’s spindle at the edge of our lawn, for the terrier-mutt has a reckoning with all — everything just a step off his center is a supposed enemy. He masters the art of war and keeps a religious index of foes and goons, and on this particular day the fight in the alley sounded Homeric, the cries of the other dog like cracks in the evening sky: silver and honed until came the hideous clips and yips, and me slogging through time and another darkening day to stop the fray, the palms of the newly planted mums splayed and tormented, torching with the setting sun. And I admit my secret love for this beast, his bloodlust and death wish. His desire to kill a summer’s full of vermin, at earth level, pulsing with courage and fury.