CALVING HEIFERS

Each day, the trail is the same—
imperfect circles cut in dry grass,
worn into soft dust that holds

yesterday’s track, exposing rock,
stones and boulders on the move,
broken loose from the whole.

Atop my own, pad and hoof
shine like last night’s coyote
under a full moon, on the trot

from canyon to draw, and the heifer
determined to calve in private
breaking away from the bunch

to hesitate mid-way, turning
over herself before going on
to a place she remembers as safe.

The trail is the same—even
at the gate where a covey of quail
will erase where I’ve gone today.

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