Where Oh Where Has My Little Bear Gone?

A lament for the New York TIMES, which reported not long ago that New York state hunters had failed to produce their average number of bearskins during the preceding twelve months.

The black bear yield is down in the Catskills.
In the Catskills the black bear yield is down.
Down in the Catskills there are more black bears
than there were a year ago in town.
Pity the snowplows on the Thruway, axle-deep
in black bears this winter . . . imagine all those
battered telephone poles climbing with black bears
growling station to station.
“Oh, watch the chicken coops, Sheriff,
the black bears are down from the hill
by the hundreds and my red rooster
has laid an egg.”
They’re singing sad songs in the Catskills
this winter, at least in Dobbs Ferry
there’s a shotgun dealer who’s shifting
to bowling balls.
The black bear yield is down in
the Catskills. The yield in the Catskills
is black bear down. If you ever
want to hunt black bears in the Catskills
I hope to God you stay in town.