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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