The Everglades National Park
FIU IDH 4007

The Closest To The Beast

Reasey Praing
IDH 4007
Journal #3
September 29, 2000

The Closest to the Beast

The ravenous beast stalks high and low,
Searching for food.
He floats like an old black wood, watching,
Cautious to the sounds around him.

He lies slothfully on the reflexive surface,
Waiting for his prey.
His dark crooked head floats above the water, reflecting
Symmetric image from the quiet plane.

His tolerant eyes stares at every surrounding detail.
He waits, for seconds, minutes, until he spies,

A young little Heron, away from the flock.

He gradually proceeds towards the creature.

Swaying his tail behind his long, scaly body,
He swims closer, drifting like a dead log,
From the grassy water,
Reaching the dry land.

His lengthy crusty body slips like a canoe.
His short strong legs slowly move
Like paddles of the nature,
Forcing the dead wood toward lively soul.

As he approaches his prey, he quietly,
Crawls out of the water and onto the bank.
His feet touch the ground, yet quiet.
He advances towards his game, watching its every move.

As he approaches the back of the bird, the attack begins.
With one swift move,
He leaps to the neck of the frightened animal.
Blood pours onto the alligator head as
The innocent struggles to get free.

When the young victim falls to the ground,
The alligator lets go and starts to
Eat the half-dead creature.
Soon it is dead, the beast
Has won.

And the closest to the beast is reached.

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