Beneath the Kudzu

After sixteen episodes
of true crime documentaries,
turn off the television
and then stretch your legs
and go for a walk in the woods.

Stride beside fallen timbers,
beside fern and poison sumac,
skirt the ridgeline
of a gully and a pause:
kudzu spills into a bowl
scooped from the earth.

Feel the shadows tug
your eye to the green hole.
Feel the shadows tug
your foot to the brink.
Teeter and catch yourself
peering for bodies and bone
beneath the kudzu.

Do not hurry past.
The kudzu wants you

to peer beneath it
and even if you do not
find the murdered bones
of a missing life,
you may find the home
of a coal skink
or a kingsnake

or you may find nothing

but your held breath
but your blood in your ears
but yourself
imagining your body
laid down beneath the kudzu.

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