Sunday, October 24, 2010

"Gold Horse, Brown Horse" - Candace Black

In the pasture behind
the house, an island of berries
ripens in the summer
heat. They will grow
plump, darker than garnets, then shrivel
away, or rotting, fall
to the brambles, tasted only by birds,
field mice. Two horses graze
here. They watch from a distance as you
whistle, their ears shifting with each
variation. One morning they reward
you and stand at the fence, flies
clinging to the moist corners
of their eyes. They know
how to take the offered
apple, even from a child's hand. Brownie
shies from the gold one. She comes
only when he moves on, and then
with hesitation. You stroke her forehead's
blaze, give her your palm to smell,
to nuzzle. Late August,
two horses rolling in the afternoon dust.

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