May 30, 2011

Zebra snake mathematics

There is a zebra snake in my bathroom!

Without first seeing its coils,
striped crossways as if
instructions of where to
hack it to bits,
I would have not given the
risk so high a measure.

But now, with visions of
slithering, heat-seeking, camouflaged stealth,
no other thoughts cross my mind.

Awareness of danger is a
discontinuous function,
jumping from 'empty' to 'full'
as the result of one casual glance.

Snake mathematics,
where 1 may as well equal
100 or 1000.

Soon, a major distraction,
such as breakfast or a sunrise,
resets my concern
to zero.
Some may argue that
apathy is where the real danger lies...

It is a binomial landscape
that I walk.
"Snakes" or "no snakes" serving
as a guide to my primordial instincts.

There is a zebra snake in my bathroom!

L. Powell
27 May 2011
Brandberg, near Uis, Namibia

Written after changing rooms when a zebra snake (spitting cobra) showed itself in my first chalet.  It was later re-identified as a harmless tiger snake, but the former identification was the most interesting.

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