Funnel-eared deer wander between houses,
forage in garbage cans, annihilate gardens.
When walkers approach, they swivel to observe,
but refuse to interrupt
whatever they’re doing.
My little hounds approach them with caution,
think they’re mute, shaggy dogs
with long legs, cloven hoofs,
too large to challenge or chase
through unfamiliar oak forest.
All afternoon, herds wander the front yard,
cross muddy driveway, gather near cottage.
Puzzled dogs recline on window seat cushion,
ponder whether to bark or pursue,
prefer smaller, acrobatic gray squirrels.