Sep. 16th, 2004

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Carefully carrying eight days' worth (four cats, two days)

of kitty litter, I step into tree-blackened yard.

Cobwebs clinging, mosquitos feasting voraciously for the

forty seconds I need to scurry to the garbage cans.

(Korean flesh, my wife jokes, is a delicacy round here.)

My too-loose shorts flap a heavy denim rhythm

with every step; the overturned Rubbermaid left as calling card

by the possum known as, for reasons unknown to me,

Chester. The only light around strains weakly from the

backyard door; the cricketsong streams steadily around,

across, and through my ears--everywhere and nowhere.

Wild, childhood fantasies and campfire tales that whisper fervidly

of ragged moaning, breaking sounds and spike-hooked horrors...

but Chester--fearsome and possessive garbage-troller

of McHenry County's darkest nights--is nowhere to be found,

and I (with discarded litter in hand) am, it seems, the only

intruder amongst the tweedling crickets, the suckling mosquitos.

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