First published online in Kudzu Review (Winter Solstice) 2011.
Driving along Highway 55 before sunrise
just above Lucky Peak Dam, I see shadowy
deer whose dark limbs rend the fog.
A herd flowing over slick, wet asphalt
a long line leaping the railing one by one
until this doe stares into my headlights.
A nick of the fender turns her suddenly
into flesh and bone, marrow and hide.
Torn from her morning circuit, she sails
a tumbling head-over-hooves clown
smearing red smiles on my windshield.
A crowd gathers and men pull her aside.
Someone will come to harvest the meat
they say. I scarcely hear this soothing tale
as I am waiting for the wintry sun to shine
to dapple the caudal stain she leaves behind.