The summer we camped in the meadow,

they led with their teeth into the lantern light

scattering only at the sound of the 4-10


All night we could hear their low growls,

hear them pacing the dry grass just far enough away

that their eyes glowed the color of the log’s coals


They kept us awake until we talked ourselves out

trying to understand how we could escape

being like our parents and teachers,

when we could save enough money to catch a ship

for Africa, New Zealand or maybe Japan


They were gone when we woke,

cold and stiff with dew


That was 1965 and there was talk of a war

We couldn’t put words to it

but knew we too would one day be running,

running forever outside a circle of light,

eyes afire, throats hoarse with rage