Bren Simmers

Out Walking

in a southwesterly that sends tumbleweeds
across the Cypress Hills. Dried
grass combed to a high sheen,
rippled and silver like darting fish.
I tack into the wind, feel the push
against shoulders and legs,
thoughts red-winged blackbirds--
when approached, they fly off,
only to resettle farther on.
Look for deer all morning
and find none. Everywhere mud.
The smell of earth waking up--
wet newspaper and salt,
a girl's first blood,
running shoes, lip balm.
A jack rabbit startles
into cover. Two hours
of dodging gopher holes and garters and--
I look up. Clouds skate past
like water-striders. The mind
quiet, wind-scoured.
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