Midday August, we are disturbing
cows in brush shade rising from soft
hollows pawed in the live oak draws

to welcome brothers into their home
and leave the contemplation of life,
knocking in their bellies, behind

in the trees—to forget the inevitable
dreams of rain. Curious, they recognize
a new face, comfortably ignoring it

as we do one another visiting the familiar
over a quick count and a few flakes of hay.
Old men now looking over brittle ground

strewn with burnt, Blue Oak leaves and
early dark acorns, fractured yellow grasses
with each passing of hoof and wheel.

Good water here—this is his legacy,
his hold to the rock, his ready escape
from the urgencies of the valley

where cows come easily to greet us.
I need not see through his eyes beyond
this dry and brittle season, we feel it.

                                                    for Todd

One response to “SPANISH FLAT

  1. John,
    The poem and photos are gifts to us all. Thanks.
    I’ll miss you in Tahoe, but see you in Elko.
    Take care.


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