Predator, or: Prey

A Cadralor

In the form of 5 Kimos

dropping suddenly from thirty meters
having spied ruffed grouse aloft
my eyasses hunger

leaves dry, berries gone, driven by hunger
settling for thin garter snake
launching down upon it

familiar musky scent in the breeze
wood mouse foraging for seeds
I slither, jaw unhinged

samaras scattered at the tall elm's roots
scampering by, I smell them
enticing pea-like treats

picnicking by their truck, this family
delighting in our forest
presents the greatest threat


The cadralor is a poem of 5, unrelated, numbered stanzaic images, each of which can stand alone as a poem, is fewer than 10 lines, and ideally constrains all stanzas to the same number of lines. Imagery is crucial to cadralor: each stanza should be a whole, imagist poem, almost like a scene from a film, or a photograph. The fifth stanza acts as the crucible, alchemically pulling the unrelated stanzas together…


The kimo shares much in common with the haiku: it appears in three lines, making it a tristich, with each line following a diminishing pattern:

  1. Ten syllables
  2. Seven syllables
  3. Six syllables

Each of these lines are unrhymed.

The kimo often deals with a static image, a single moment in which there is no movement. Along with its brief nature, this makes it an excellent form to reflect on or celebrate a particular instance.

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