I'd been drilling through foundation
to install a new hose faucet
one October afternoon
when the sin of my vibrations
startled sleeping fauna
back to slithered life.

It dangled from the doorframe
flinching not an inch
once its presence was detected
and my face went wide in wonder.
I exited the basement
making strides to grab my gloves.
Protection of the leather
would help me catch the vermin
but that brief time with my back turned
had let the snake escape.

I suppose that's how it should be.
There's no outsmarting nature.
The rest of that day's plumbing
was done with restless eyes.

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