by Stanley Toledo

Death plunged my way in a strike, 
coming from on high, diving
in a flash as a raptor, while I sat
behind a pane of glass contemplating 
the torments of desire.

With powerful wings angled 
for speed, eyes gripped on the unwitting
prey, talons extended and ready
to kill, it crashed into the glass
with a loud and angry bang.

Coming about, I saw it dazed on the
ground and, after a moment, recover
and fly away, leaving specs 
of blood and feather on the pane
aligned with the back of my head.

Flowing streams are my
muse now as I sit in the same chair, 
bothering not to draw the curtain, 
for I know if death fails one way
it will succeed in another.  

Stanley Toledo writes verse and plays, which are performed in theatres in the U.S. and aboard.  His work has been published in Ponder Review, Santa Ana River Review, Luminous Expression, Grand Little Things, Sage Cigarettes and elsewhere.  He lives in the California Delta.