Dogs 2010

IMPOTENT PEDESTRIANS
(3/22/10)


they were
two miles
out
on their usual
route
at about
the farthest point
from their
home

a half block
ahead
he sees
two strange men
fleeing a home
one carrying a shotgun
pointed
toward the sky

he averts
his eyes
as the men
hurriedly enter
a car parked
at the curb
then wait
there

"that's
not right"

he says
and she stops talking
so far oblivious
to the intruders
since facing him
in the middle
of a now
interrupted
conversation

he signals her
to be quiet
and keep moving
as they come abreast
of the vehicle
staring
straight ahead
quickly
walking past

they hear
a woman screaming
and the sounds
of a struggle
through
an open door
in the house
but continue
forward

a block away
they turn a corner
knock on a door
and ask the residents
to dial
911

the call
placed
they peek
down the street
and see the car
still parked
as before

with
no invitation
to come inside
and wait
they realize
their vulnerability
thank the callers
and continue
walking

they resume
a circuitous
return path back
to their own neighborhood
glancing nervously
at each approaching
automobile
to ensure
that it wasn't
the suspect
vehicle

45 minutes
later
they were home
and call
the police
to confirm
that the earlier
contact
had been
made

the complaint
verified
they hang up
look at each other
then wait
quietly
for the evening
news

they hope
that the
woman
is OK