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Donna Vorreyer

Compass Points

Sun pummels the March earth,
damp from remembered snow.
Evening sifts through tangled
branches; flecks of mud spray

my legs, my dog’s black fur,
dappling our winter shrouds
with light. Her tongue rolls loose
as she barks, cutting clean as

an icebreaker through floes of
geese who never went south, geese
who have forgotten flight, content
to honk complaint and trample

neighbor’s lawns. They scatter
at our footsteps, but the dog still
tugs the leash, migrating off trail
toward the street, distracted. A lone

goose lays in the parkway, body
bent, a question mark, victim
of some driver in a hurry –soccer
mom shushing her rowdy brood,

baggy-pants teen blasting Jay-Z,
work-weary dad speeding home
late and still past deadline, others
who have forgetten where they

belong. Sniffing the carcass,
confused by its stillness, the dog
whines and pulls away, losing
interest. There is more sun, more

trail to roam. We resume our cadence,
slow, steady. We know where we
should be, confident of our footsteps
on the path, turning toward home.