Serpentine

Not dapper, not dishevelled
newspaper under arm, he fits right in
a dog pauses to sniff his heel
and registers no concern

There is a long meandering esplanade
vendors, walkers, lunching networkers
someone is feeding pigeons
as readers lose themselves in books

There is no choice, no selection

If there was intent there would be
motivation, and in that, a vector to intercept
a bench to approach, to make appeals

What monster lacks the will
to be monstrous, is all the more so
all contrition and deference
with a merely fanged jaw

He brushes against a shoulder
in an envelope of lung-pressings, close, as
steam exhaled from the hot dog vendor’s cart

How indeed do the protein spikes
bind to these receptors—oh, but they do

A breeze cares not for weather vanes
but finds them, each and every one

The lunch hour wanes, and
the plaza begins to clear out, and later
will be quiet as a cancelled rodeo