Look, a Lizard!

by Rick Kempa

or rather, the lizard,
my neighbor (not my “pet”)
who, like me, spends the day
moving in and out of the sun,
I with my lawn chair, he (less laden)
from under his rock where he has

scooped out a nest of needles
in the soft dirt to the top of it—
cooling off, warming up: we
are serious about our work. I confess
I am envious of his rock. He’s
there now, gripping the granules

with his long toes, cocking his head
this way and that, exquisitely alert
to the fly buzz—heralding, he hopes,
his next meal, which is more than
I’ve thought through. Neighbor,
I have much to learn from you.

Poet and essayist Rick Kempa lives in Rock Springs, Wyoming, USA, where he recently finished his thirtieth and final year of teaching at Western Wyoming College. An avid backpacker and desert-lover, he edited the anthology ON FOOT: Grand Canyon Backpacking Stories and co-edited Going Down Grand: Poems from the Canyon. His latest poetry collection is Ten Thousand Voices. www.rickkempa.com