by Kimberly Ann Priest
Swish of tail, stamp of hoof—the snow
pulled up against the barn for warmth
and the way the gelding nudges the ground
for any brush of grass,
his nose inhaling up,
I tell you,
he knows I am the imposter
touching his side as though we are friends.
I want to saddle him up,
ride the field,
but this is not mine for the doing;
every animal has its own master.
the ground to signal my insolence
roving one broad shoulder with my fingertips,
then twining them into his mane,
tempting power, asking
to be considered raw and wanting—
not chaste, not home again—but out there:
dirt in wind in tongue kicked up.
Like a mirror,
the gelding’s eyes find me, glistening with cold.
In them, I see my husband moving
far across the way,
hanging the saddle he has oiled on its hook.
Last updated November 14, 2022