In the Rut

At six a.m., I learned
the sun god had traded his golden chariot
for a pale green corduroy chair.

It was a lazy kind of light that coated the mountain.
A light that implied comfort
and “just another day,” rather than grandeur
and the chokecherries swallowed the indignity.

The fir tree, cold and thirsty, narrowed its eyes.
I was up in it, one of six thousand million
dressed in black, perched in silence on my sniper stand
slowly turning, smelling of sage and juniper.

Below me two clearings full of sugar beets
and you may never understand how, or why,
death leant me a thunderglass tip
to cap the minute hand.

Relax like the rising sun
and let the velvet shed from your antlers.
Sip deep like the tree from muzzy waters
and forget what it doesn’t help (only hurts?) to know.

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