Your Last Rooster

by Tina Barry


You half hoped the cartoon


that startled you at daybreak,

had come from the man

in your bed

who'd strutted about the bar,

over-preened chest

atop short bent legs.


He'd promised another go round

with you, the evening's choice hen.

Vowed to cook pancakes in the morning.

But his muscles fluttered

and off he flew

leaving the stink of barnyard

on the sheets.


The cock crowed in the alleyway,

again and then again.

You parted the curtain.

Peered through the glass.

Hoping for him--

russet beak, legs spinning.

Anything but the reflection

of your own sooty eyes,

hair a bale of dry hay.