There were no wild turkeys here
when we were boys—no Great Egrets either
mimicking Blue Herons
statuesque in the pasture
waiting for the earth to move
a varmint cleaning house after rain.
Scattered atop the ridges,
we haven’t seen the cows and calves
in weeks, the young bulls longer
through December rains.
They don’t need us now,
they don’t need hay.
Lifeline of the canyon, the creek
arrived on Christmas Eve
running muddy, coloring the river
with streaks of chocolate
under the new bridge
it took years to finish.
And when the Tule fog
leaps and claws up canyon
like a lion to wrap us in a gray
cocoon that shuts the world away,
there’s nothing to do but wait
until the sun burns it off.