The Library of Congress

 
{ site_name: 'Poetry 180', subscribe_url:'/share/sites/Bapu4ruC/poetry.php' }

Poem Number 167

The Last Wolf

Mary TallMountain

The last wolf hurried toward me
through the ruined city
and I heard his baying echoes
down the steep smashed warrens
of Montgomery Street and past
the ruby-crowned highrises
left standing
their lighted elevators useless

Passing the flicking red and green
of traffic signals
baying his way eastward
in the mystery of his wild loping gait
closer the sounds in the deadly night
through clutter and rubble of quiet blocks
I hear his voice ascending the hill
and at last his low whine as he came
floor by empty floor to the room
where I sat
in my narrow bed looking west, waiting
I heard him snuffle at the door and
I watched

He trotted across the floor
he laid his long gray muzzle
on the spare white spread
and his eyes burned yellow
his small dotted eyebrows quivered

Yes, I said.
I know what they have done.

from Light on a Tent Wall, 1990
University of California, Los Angeles, CA

Copyright 1990 by Mary TallMountain.
All rights reserved.
Reproduced with permission (click for permissions information).