In the Western Counties
a vampire played pinochle
with George Smithers.
A passing bus disgorged
a black ambassador
from Ethiopia.

It was spring.
The vampire noted the pear blossoms
in the deserted yard
of a dead truck driver.
George--fingering a Queen--
nodded his head.

In Africa, the ambassador
was quoted as saying,
the gray swards of grass
bend beneath the passing
of a diminutive lion.
The vampire raised an eyebrow.
All of us turned with dismay
as the Queen,
rousing herself from the supine,
limped off
across the bending gray sward
of northern Africa.

We are all waiting for lions,
said the vampire.
Lions, said George.
All of us are waiting for lions.
--d.n. stuefloten