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GRANVILLE, NEW YORK:
THE MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY

In summer, when the sun
slants through
and smears the cages
of these sleeping beasts,
the smell of heated fur
nearly explodes.
For even the air
is stuffed in the land
of taxidermy gone amok.
In this peaceable kingdom
the rabbit disdains
the bobcat's teeth
and hundreds of birds
stare straight ahead.

A barn that droops
like a half-dead horse
is backdrop for a farm
emerging from the wall
in shocks of real hay,
a branch, and a pond
of stiff, blue sheet.
Here the weasel
and woodchuck come to drink
observed by an owl
and a three-hundred pound
black bear-a bear
of infinite appetite
for boredom,
waiting to eat you alive.



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