Setting Things Right on a Friday Night
I was going for a walk in the almost dark when headlights from behind lit up a porcupine a few feet ahead and I didn’t mind shooting the breeze with her but not before we left the macadam for the short grass and the porcupine told me right off she was attracted to my dark gray suede shoes, same color and texture she said as the hide beneath all her quills and no, she nor any other porcupine she knew could catapult them into my skin and she instructed me how to stroke her, she so liked being stroked and how almost impossible it was to find anyone who’d do it and when I did it, the quills tickled us both and she asked if she could run her paws over my shoes and I said, sure, why not, what could it hurt and I thought she might be falling in love, then she told me her twin boys had been struck by a pickup and succumbed in the tangle of witch hazel beyond the U-curve so what else could I do but give them to her, leaving me to make it home barefoot in the sharp light of a new moon.
Charles Springer has degrees in anthropology and is an award-winning painter. A Pushcart Prize nominee, he is published in over seventy journals including The Cincinnati Review, Faultline, Windsor Review, Packingtown Review, and Tar River Poetry. His first collection of poems entitled JUICE has been published by Regal House Publishing. He writes from Pennsylvania.