What More Can You Do?
By Alexa Mergen

At that time of day when the leaves’ edges sharpen
against the darkening dusk, the turkey hen flaps first
to the bed of the pickup truck, on to the garage eave,

then pushes against gravity to reach the sycamore tree
where she roosts. There were two others and a mother.
No one knows what happened. She’s an anomaly on the

city street, one of her kind. Like love, like hate, loneliness
can be measured by many methods, as a solid or liquid,
in inches or cubic yards. To think it’s impossible to know

another’s mind. It’s enough that all life seeks pleasure,
avoids pain; suffering at best can be managed. The tree’s
branch stays strong in the wind. The bird is hidden.

She knows the sounds of neighbors’ voices, that when
they cease, those other beings are also sleeping.
The night sky is cloudless, the air not too brisk.

Winter, the rains, ever weeks away.

Alexa Mergen’s poems appear in numerous journals; “Distance,” published in Solo Novo, was a clmp Taste Test selection. Her articles on poetry appear in Front Porch, HerCircle and Passages North. She edits the blog Yoga Stanza.