The heavens effervesced with smoke and noise

as spiders, peonies, and palms enthralled

the mobs of men and women, girls and boys,


but shocked the foxes, rabbits, deer, and mauled

the air like ack-ack fire. It spooked the bats

while coons abandoned kits and field mice crawled


down burrows. Even butterflies and gnats

behaved as if huge bolides overhead

were quaking space-time. Humans have their spats,


but this seemed more like war. Some birds dropped dead,

some lost their hearing; dogs were hit by cars

or disappeared, while other creatures bled,


pulled through and lived, disfigured, etched with scars

to face anew this fête beneath the stars.




(Appeared in The New Verse News)


Elisadella's picture
My poor dog quivers from thunder and fireworks... how I dread the 4th and the many days before and after...I have never thought about the other poor critters. Bless all creatures great + small and protect their ears. Thank you Miles

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Miles T. Ranter's picture
Many thanks. By the way, the “spiders,” “peonies,” and “palms” (in Line 2) are names of certain types of fireworks effects. Peony: a spherical break of colored stars. Palm: This one produces an effect that looks like a palm tree when it bursts. Some even have a thick tail that looks like a trunk. Spider: This one is fast-burning and bursts very hard, which makes the stars shoot out straight and flat. Basically, they look like lots of spider legs.

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