Fat and happy bovine string
of shiny-hided flesh upon their hay
somewhere wrapped in a dusty haze
apart from the appetites of men
and women like them, hungry for more
ground addicted to water wasted
Good company, these young heifers
who can read our minds and hearts—
perceptive beings who trust in us
that we prefer
oblivious to the ravenous
machine designed to incorporate
everything with promises of hay
until we’re gone.
Moonrise, mottled skies,
jigsaw clouds like islands
floating between us and the space
old eyes need to find sanity,
but tonight’s fractured skyscape
Bob has been waiting for this cow to calve for a week, checking her and her tribe of first-calf heifers in the evenings. I am impressed with the iPhone’s ability to capture a wide range of light, and if held still, its sharpness. He’s also captured the maternal instincts of this new mother #8118, a Hereford-Angus X cow, with her fresh Wagyu X calf – exactly what we’re looking for in replacement heifers.
On the horns of an infant moon,
the creek shrinks and pools
between sycamores and live oaks
as babies come to first-time mothers
bringing the bear tracks downcanyon
on the scent of spent placentas.
Black progeny of the river nymph –
white heifer driven madly by Hera’s
gadfly Oestrus to cross continents
and populate Asia – find maternity
perplexing at first. Yet, lick and nuzzle
the stumbling wet struggle to stand,
suckle and rest that enflames instinct
in all flesh. Worthy timeless worship,
no better mother ever than a cow.
“IO” is included in POEMS FROM DRY CREEK, Starhaven, 2008.
Laugh when you can—
there are enough unfunny days.
Let irony dance nakedly,
hand in hand
with the unspoken,
beneath the flesh of humans
dying for confirmation.
We have become too serious
for our own good—
to be believed as real
representations of this nation
wrought from imperfect men,
and women, trying to forget
their sins—and I among them.
Let the wild calculations
of hawk and coyote confirm
our impetuous natures
to gain a better sense
of who we truly are.
(click image to enlarge July 2012 photo of Cooper’s Hawk)