Poem #44: “Claim Jumper”

Claim Jumper

The little thieves
have made a well-worn path
from their den in the creek bank
and through the copse of trees.

The trail ends under the barbed-wire fence,
and their tiny paw prints disperse,
spreading outward like the footprints
of forty-niners scrambling up the slopes
to stake a claim before the gold runs out.

The outermost rows—
so full of tiny golden nuggets!
—are theirs.

Or so they think. The box
traps in my hand say
otherwise.

© 2016, all rights reserved.

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