Saturday, February 1, 2014

Blood Turns Red Only When It Meets Oxygen

Blood Turns Red Only When It Meets Oxygen

the cattle-egret-to-cow ratio
is 12-to-2 in this pasture, 0-to-6 in that
seldom one outrider to one keel

claiming blood turns red only when it meets oxygen
is like saying you know you’re dead
after you’ve died
or you’re asleep when you’re dreaming

palm litter — fronds, flowers, seeds —
ironwood needles at cliff edge
white foam, black rocks, blue horizon

the catch in my throat is asthma
always some body part refusing its job

all night a cow cried
may it not have lost its calf
may it not have strayed into the stream

remain as long as it takes for rain to fall
abraded, debrided, dehisced
by absence of rain

the cow with the newborn calf
the cow with the fuzzy calf
the heifer with egrets parked between its ears

everything about someone
is shown by the size of the triangle
they turn to mark a page

I wake to rain’s in breath, stirring
like water coming to simmer
irregular strike, plops of water

may more & more cows sing to my old age

1 comment:

  1. aw, this is lovely language, touching poem. I would like more singing cows, please.