A Visitor to the Quarry

Limestone dust scoots across the road
And filters into the already dying June grass.
The peacock appears at the quarry windows,
Not looking in, not looking at the trucks,
Not engaged in any way with human life,
Abiding in its own peacock world
Of green velvet and sweeping coattails,
Gold-tipped cigarette holder and champagne
Glass, muddled fruit of peach and apricot.

He enters the truck lane and a 25-ton truck
Brakes and waits. He strolls onto the grass
Again, then backtracks to the truck scales,
Cascades onto them, stopping another truck.
He raises his glass in a toast to the driver,
Then elegantly removes himself from the scale,
Continues past the ditch, and disappears
Into the pasture, his top hat barely visible
Above the Johnson grass and ironweed.

–Shaun Perkins

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