That wild turkey was running like
its life was on the line and made me sit up
on the D train coming out of Brooklyn
by the tracks headed for Red Hook.
It didn't help that the D was running faster,
bird head up, bird legs mad churning.
Scrawny. Like me. That's how I know it was wild
and not fat from cornmeal and sunflowers
in some roofed over patch of dirt staring
past the industrial grade cyclone fencing.
Not so unlike that chicken loosed from a coop
and finding a home in a food writer's backyard
in Astoria, beautiful Astoria close to a bridge
that's named Hell's Gate, a bridge for trains.
The bird had made a grudging peace with the pair
of resident cats, the writer elegantly musing
that the concept of predator and prey
rests on a ratio of size and heft
(something to say about being a big fat bird)
that meals became communal, a bowl of canned cat food.
The extra tidbit of a jumping insect the one
fought over, a backyard of territories.
Not strange at all in a city where before
a circus yearly marched a herd of elephants
from the Hunts Point rail yards into a tunnel
and out to the exit near the UN.
Trunk to tail in the cool of a mid-summer night
in the dark before the sun rose over the East River.
While the host of the city slept warmly taut
Noah's ark was emptying into its indifferent lap.