Earmarks of Ethics


Let them battle on
like beetles in a bottle
made of black boron brisket basters,

see if I care.
I’ll be too busy
lifting a lark from grand larceny

at the local
law-enforcement library,
settling into books about justice

and the earmarks
of ethics on an enlightened society.
Just take, for instance, the calm songbird

known as the
male gavel finch. This master
of manipulation picks up a stick in its beak

and slams it
against the trunk of a tree,
making vibrations imperceptible by humans,

but irresistible
to the finicky female.
One well-placed strike may be all it takes.

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