yellow knife

yellow knife, carried from africa in the pocket of a ditch-digging

peace corps writer;

a gabon viper once clung

to the netting of his tent

while he lay sleepless below.

we all need shelter and books.

all these years later

i keep the knife close.

and carve initials

on the rails of the old bridge

not because i think it's mine,

but because i know it  is not.