t.m. thomson

Photo: Jeff Ruane / Flickr

Lords of Moonlight

Skunk wanders twilight — can’t see for shit but knows his grubs.  Possum sharpens teeth on grass blades, bites into, savors tick pulp while raccoon perches at creek edge, catches crayfish, trills to her masked brace.

They all meet at the moonlight-stuffed dumpster — raccoon climbs in, takes her pick of pecan half & wrinkled tangerine sprinkled with fly raisins, rains the rest down onto the heads of her brood as possum shuffles along silently, her pink nose sniffing & rejecting plastic shards & torn paper for the still-soft corpse of a rat.

Skunk skulks with nose to ground & finds one whole honeybee, gulps it down & then accepts a corner of bread that raccoon has carelessly dropped from the lip of her cold metal castle, rusted & scratched & reeking of shit but, O, how it gleams in rays of moon, how her shaggy head looks down from that height, her whiskers ghosts shivering summer nights.

See how possum’s eldritch teeth chatter — a warning of the way the lowly can take the diseased into body, break it like bread. Catch black eyes of skunk, feel yourself backing away from those arcane onyxes, hoping night shields you from their view as you step out of the crescent ring in which the lords of moonlight swim & shamble & feast.

T.M. THOMSON is co-author of Frame & Mount the Sky (2017), a chapbook of ekphrastic poetry, as well the author as Strum and Lull (2019) and The Profusion (2019).  She is a lover of animals, art, trees, surrealism, black and white movies, walking in autumn rains, feeding wild birds in winter, playing in spring mud, & bat-watching in summer.  Her first full-length collection of poems, Plunge, comes out in 2023.

Read more by t.m. thomson

Poem in Compass Rose
Poem in Horned Things
Poem in The Goodlife Review
More on the author’s Facebook Page