A City of Angels

by Scott Utley

From this primordial caldron, sulfur and nitrogen compounds fume, ghost-like,
up into the ether. Here is where stars are born & stars die. Here, a lizard is apt
to check you out up & down as fast as a rattlesnake can rattle. Here is where the
trickster Coyote crosses my path. No matter how congested Los Angeles becomes the
Coyote finds me. Just yesterday close to nine in the morning, passing Benedict
Canyon in my car, an unusually large doe gallops into my peripheral vision. She
charges head on for my car's front bumper. Two seconds before impact she freezes
then cocks her head from side to side gazing at me with an unmistakable attitude; a
sense of humor.

Later in the day, a butterfly of uncommon earthly hues glides into my garden
circling twice before resting on top of Alex's head. I tip my gaze skyward just in
time to catch two mischievous hummingbirds hover above them for just a moment before
they return to their frenetic game of tag. I think I am witnessing a still life in
motion. I rake the driveway free of the purple jacaranda blooms while the cat purrs
upturned, side to side with my dogs; all three innocents hypnotized by the spring
sun. Finally, just as I think I've seen it all for one day a hawk comes charging
from the heavens into the avocado tree & lunges at a flock of doves cooing
blissfully out on a limb. Feathers come raining down upon our heads. The hawk seems
stunned as it dawns upon him that all the doves have gotten away.


Posted on 06/15/2007
Copyright © 2019 Scott Utley

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Karl Waldbauer on 06/16/07 at 06:29 AM

You attract a swirling mist of magic when you write of the beauty that is L.A.

Posted by Coleman Demiurge on 06/16/07 at 09:56 AM

How I do miss that place... This is very good; a fine job capturing moments most people just look right past, and forget. A beauty indeed - very well done.

Posted by Kristina Woodhill on 06/16/07 at 02:41 PM

I enjoyed the observations of your day very much.

Posted by Quentin S Clingerman on 07/15/07 at 11:54 AM

Nature is where we are if we just are "aware". An enjoyable look at the L.A. we never read or hear about!

Posted by Frank Lee on 12/13/08 at 08:27 PM

stumbled across this today, and glad i did, very deep...it seems that everything is blessed or posessed in la.

Posted by William Brunk on 11/17/09 at 09:10 PM

a look from the inside out, intriguing and new

Posted by Michael Smith on 01/21/10 at 12:07 AM

If a Haiku could have a few hundred syllables, this would make a great one. It is amazing how standard language can still be so vivid. It would seem nature can be found everywhere if you know how to look for it. Great stuff here, Scott. Thanks for sharing your experience.

Posted by Shawnacy Perez on 06/04/11 at 08:01 AM

thick prose, and rhythmic. moving us through images, and flashes of moments collected like birds in a cage. great stuff.

Posted by Chris Sorrenti on 07/05/11 at 12:46 AM

As a life long nature nut, I really enjoyed your various descriptions here Scott. Easy to visualise...spiritually uplifting.

Posted by Angela Stevens on 07/17/12 at 08:09 PM

The vividness of this is beautiful. Really.

Posted by Nancy Ames on 12/16/15 at 03:15 AM

I enjoyed this poetic story very much and it seems that wildlife are treating cities as if they are forests lately.

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