The cry which stripped the street away,
Which left the ancient marsh to rise,
And claimed the gardens for the pine,
Lets loose the wolves and bears of old.
A scream the soul of night itself,
Which stretched the forest, coast to coast.
Inhuman land beneath the moon,
Unused to axe, to fear, to smoke.
And then up close: the clack of beak.
A yard or so: the scratching claws.
A foot and less: near silent whisps,
Of wings so soft they make no breath.
And last I hear the heart and pulse,
And feel nocturnal howlings rise.