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Tuesday, 11 October 2011


A yell at Eagle Point in the Grand Canyon,
"Rattlesnake!" We stopped, turned about face,
our sightseeing on hold as a ranger ran
to the steps of the gift shop, hiding place
of this unexpected but always expected guest.

This big guy with a long stick and deep container
gently created some dust, no fuss, no commotion,
until the snake emerged to be lifted by the stick-end
and dropped into the bucket in one smooth motion,
applauded by gaping tourists, in awe, impressed.

The snake, released a hundred yards away, was soon gone
and we were even more respectful of the ground 
we were standing on.

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