we become the reflection (of our art) – a cautionary tale for Ted.

it was the eyes
that he noticed
first

in the night
and in the light
they could stop the traffic

glowing red

and
it was the jawline
rough

with a greenish tinge
of algae
multiplying

and somehow
it was the snout
that always seemed
longer
than before

always seeming
to need more length
to fit the teeth in

the permanent smile
of a friendly guy

waiting
in his place
should someone
happen
to walk by

stay to talk awhile
stay
if they’d like
for lunch

will you stay

for a while

for
lunch
.
.
.
.
ah well

.
.
.
.
it’s in the way

the skin beneath his chin
has corrugated
along straight lines

and into squares

raised
into ridges
upon his back

he wonders
why

but
it doesn’t matter

it’s okay

he’ll grab the camera
sidle down
to the swamp

sink into
the best place
for waiting
where it’s warm

then open up his mouth
in a slow
and sun-bake
smile

a broad
toothy
and green-lipped
smile

wait

wait patient

another gator
could be along
any time

~
Check out Ted’s marvelous American Alligator photographs (and much more) here.