Just outside the front row of tables
in my favorite coffee shop, a lifelike
mastodon ambles up and stops,
its trunk extended to a little boy.
Curious, the boy reaches up and touches the
tip of the huge animal’s trunk. “Look, mom,”
he says, “he wants to be friends.” His
mother smiles, takes him by the hand,
and walks away, finished with her coffee
sample. A few minutes later the mammoth
too is gone, wandering about somewhere
else in the mall, entertaining little children
and scaring their parents and other adults
who never expected to see a mammoth,
real or not, in their shopping mall.