Garter Snake

what i had taken for a path
you knew to be home

your long striped road of a body
coiled in last year’s leaves

poised for whatever the first
day of spring might bring

to a hill scarred and scoured
by centuries of exploitation

i study your legless stance
you gaze off to the north

your tongue flickering
i hold out marshmallow hands

show me how to inhabit
one thought at a time

even if i cannot simply
crawl out of an old skin

i could hone my cravings
till they’re small and sharp

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