At a restaurant door we discovered four geese,
white and cocked against intruders in their darkness,
hissing, reaching necks like rubber bands, hard beaks.
Scared, we sensed they were more fierce than us;
like they knew ‘it matters brother, why not show an interest?’
Diners watched us - faltering - would we pass?
OK, I felt afraid - edging bricks towards a latch
when gander, tense, advanced and looped his bullet head
within an inch, into my crotch. I felt a sense
of a need to kick, instigate my violence
against those coal tar eyes and hissing sway.
But I held off and gander kind-of-sighed and backed away.
Now I regret that surge of heat, of fear, distrust, alarm,
when diners clapped and sussing meant so much, so much, to him.