Monday Poem

Before the Ink Dries

Jim Culleny

When suits enter the woods
the animals flee.

When Pradas plod the undergrowth
not even the king of the jungle is safe.
Lions become lambs
and lambs, lamb chops.

When the scent of Brooks Brothers
wafts through primal domains
even 800 lb gorillas take a hike
like pipsqueak squirrels
who can smell death
at distances of light years.
They scurry into shadows
at the glint of cufflinks.

All forest creatures know
that a man in a tie may be
more vicious than a werewolf
at full moon or a great white
off Coney Island in high-sweat July.

Beware the lapel, the mother bear
warns her cubs. Lapels frame the heads
of mighty predators like necklaces
of skulls and tiger’s teeth
and silk hankies that peek
from breast pockets are no less than
the marks of Cain.

The spear-pens of bankers may pierce
the heart of a wilderness
more deeply than the bronze tips
of fierce Greeks pierced the heart of Troy.

Once they’re hurled a wilderness dies
a sure death before the ink dries.