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Maurice Rigoler. Click the Next or Previous links below the poem to navigate between poems. Remember, Poetrysoup is an environment of encouragement and growth. Thank you.
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(From my forthcoming book "A New England Boy.")
Was he the same that only weeks before
I watched moving through the open field
with sure-footed assurance and style,
fueled by hunger, ears pricked up, eyes keen,
nose to the ground, on the hunt?
It was hard to tell, for his feet were deep
in snow, his frame thinned out, his ribs exposed
beneath a scruffy pelt, his head drooped
on weakened shoulders, eyes in a worried stare,
straining at something far off, perhaps diffused,
his hunger incited by one final desperate charge
for something warm, his life-force weak.
He had been on the hunt, but not for warm flesh
or self-preservation – gashes on his flanks
and snout, dangling tufts of torn-out fur spoke
of his ordeal and probable defeat to keep
his mating dominance, brought down, cast off,
humiliated – denied those two insatiable urges –
hunger and procreation.
He stood shivering, insensitive to the falling snow,
his gaze, though outward, had turned
inward, the outside world perhaps receding?
His pelt whitened more and more, and he took on
the appearance of an old grainy photograph,
each static dot carrying some infinitely small
piece of him, and gradually he began blending,
blurring into the background of a world that
had sustained him, and on which he had
for so long depended, as he and that world
began disintegrating into a vacant whiteness.