Another Fine Day

I dreamed of horses again,
my mare and her baby
and I, combing out her
chestnut forelock as she
lifted her head and the
wind caught her mane
in a way I thought (in my
dream) how beautiful.

When I awoke I counted
how old she would be if
the riding accident had not
happened. I still see an
animal with a large hole
in its side, letting me lead
her by leather bridle away
from pavement to grass
where we shot her, many
people gathered around.

I am seated on the back of an
ambulance when comes the
shot. Afterward, I kneel at
her shoulder not far from
the foot-wide gaping hole
from where intestines had
spilled ten hands in length
onto the pavement after I
rode into a pole sticking
three feet above ground.

That type of mourning,
it does not matter who sees;
they should, as a form of
penance. We removed her
English tack and men took
her away on a truck bed.
Born St. Patrick’s Day, she
would be twenty-six now.

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The Burial

One year after his death, palpably
and more quietly that when it first began
I continued to grieve in many ways.

One way: sharing a note I wrote for him.
Later, having lunch in a restaurant booth
a friend brought this up, and to my surprise

chose “emo” to describe what I’d put online,
and to tell me who I was. Who she was not.
She smiled. She almost laughed.

What do we do in the moments when
it does not seem possible to be less understood.
What do we say to mockery’s cruel face?

Ha, yeah.

Of all the conceivable responses: Ha, yeah.
Maybe he had died one year ago, but on that day
I buried him and somehow also buried myself.

(October 28, 2018)

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