— Millicent Kellogg
The quarter moon
gives just enough light
to detect black shadows
of a deer family
coming to sample the outback.
They walk with hesitation,
each hoof suspended in air
for a moment, as though
the footing must be approved
for safety and ambiance.
Black eyes are reflective mirrors –
Circles of brilliance detecting
placement of plantings and pots
offering sweet buds at the right height
For the spotted, dove-soft fawns.
Checking porch grapes suspended
on wires, the doe’s curling tongue
captures green leaves and the
bursting purple pearls of
fine Pinot Noir.
A wind chime quintet plays deep
zen notes when the buck’s antlers
delicately pluck the strings. Cylinders
swing in small arcs, trying to touch
again ……. they like their own sound.
Before they leave, the family meets
under the Live Oak to decide how
many stars they will award this Cafe Noir.
The Heavens register four winkles.
Perhaps a fountain would merit five.