Tag Archives: Black Friday





I stumble out of an old dream panicked
about cattle I haven’t checked in months
on a hidden ranch I can’t place, connect
except they were not grazing vineyard rows
with no fences, not loose in town this time,
but on some hard-to-gather rolling ground
you can’t see from the pocked asphalt road
snaking through blond summer foothills.

Last time, they were OK, bull calves
too big to brand breeding sisters, but alive
on good feed and water. It may have been
the turkey dressing drenched in juices,
or the cranberries fermenting fear familiar
that I recognize more than this imagined place
to wait before saddling a horse, loading-up
asleep to tilt at impossible windmills.

I’ve been here before, rusty wire on redwood
posts askew, exploring canyons, finding old
rough-haired families too weak to be wild—
all the guilt and disappointment I need
to torture my subconscious. Too old for that,
I roll over to let my weak knees hang before
testing with a first step towards reality:
cigarette, coffee and a poem for Black Friday.




Once in awhile a fellow blogger will poke a poem out of me. Thanks Evelyne, I feel a little better now:


Herd camped at the gate,
waiting for it to open
to the corral,
to the lead-ups and chutes
for processing
before spitting them out
to rush into another
crowded pen

on the TV news as if
Wall Street’s making hay
with everybody shopping
for the holidays—

as if we’ve traded
mashed potatoes, turkey, stuffing
and gravy with cranberries
and family for a bargain
with a credit card—

as if all the cattle
really want in.