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this is not the woods
and wildlife is not
two chipmunks scampering
across the sidewalk

the trees stand here
in landscaped disorder
shrugging leaves with
seasoned indifference

approximating nature
I tell myself as birds
the real ones not
pigeons or sparrows
dart between branches

yet even the grass
seems untame somehow
and the ground itself
alive with uncertainty

as I stand for a moment
on this hill displaced
from concrete from glass
their inert familiarity

one life jumbled among many
I’m not alone I realize
yearning to belong in such
manufactured wilderness

while gently from below
come muffled growls
automobile grizzlies
lumbering along their
winding asphalt trails

—Harry Newman