A louder-than-normal rustling, low in the eucalyptus where we cross. We peer in. Someone hiding? A park security officer once asked us if we saw any homeless, said they sometimes wait for people to leave their cars, then break in. Maybe a bad idea to take this path at the edge of the orchard that flanks the Citrus Park. I conjure Big Foot. David spots a squirrel going up a tree, and for several moments that reassures me. Lizards rustle over dry leaves. I look over my shoulder. My husband tells me about a science fiction plot, a show I would not watch because it is too violent. The leaves flutter on one tree in a row of trees. I keep my eyes on that spot, at the same time trying to listen to the story while ignoring the parts about mutilation. The car now far behind in the lot, I grip the keys deep in my pocket. I maintain a casual pace even when the birds go silent.
is a visual artist as well as a writer. She grew up in rural Michigan and now lives in Southern California. Her poems have appeared in various journals, including 3Elements Review, The Paris Review, The Innisfree Poetry Journal, Poemeleon, Common Ground Review, and The Ekphrastic Review.