They milled around the cooler in awkward silence,
bobbing between the ice cubes while enormous
infant fingers splashed in the cold water,
searching, hungry with anticipation.
The party is over. Crawfish carcasses
stare from the table, dull-eyed and sunburn red.
The cat sniffs inquiringly, but their flesh
has mostly been picked over. The sky unfurls
pure as a morning glory. Birds preen,
bustle about their various errands, and chatter
lightly. I pace the yard in silence, gather
up the paper plates and empty cans,
boil water for the coffee, and feed the cat.
Michael Symmons Roberts*
1 day ago