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Last ride

“People
  Come up to me
  Concerned
  That I’ll
  Reproduce”
    ~ Emo Philips

In the summer these hills turn dry, dusty
The horses require supplies of water and fresh alfalfa
Not to mention all the accompanying attention
Time and money
I wonder why people have them
Both the horses and the time and money
Not to mention the unused capacity for interaction
In these atavistic times
Have we a throwback to the days this was frontier land
Or a much longer throwback?

She laughs at the women I instinctively find most alluring
“They’re horsy-looking” she says
“Lanky and awkward with their long limbs
  Heeled hooves prancing
  ‘Tsok! tsok! tsok!’”
When I tell her “They look like me” she says
“I love you for your gentle soul”
My reciprocation isn’t enough for her
In these demanding times
But I say it helps that she’s small and cute
Medium size anyway and tight
Some things just work out nicely.

The first riders charged forth from the steppes
Their boldest and most roadworthy reached the western shores of Europe
Home of the Neanderthals
Or those who may have descended from them
A people long of limb and creative in art
In this way imbued with a zest for the longest wildest ride
Forming the combination that accrued worldwide empires and global manifest destiny
Fugues and tone poems, steam and gas engines, wired and wireless communication
Skyscrapers and skylights, plastic and steel, silicon and silicone implants
Global media and mass propaganda, multinational businesses and international conflict
Resource extraction and efficient production, effluent raw sludge and oil spills
Volatile derivative markets and nonvolatile magnetoresistive memories
Nuclear weapons and genetically modified neorganisms
Fabricated epidemics of hypercholesterolemia immunodeficiency bird and swine flu
Actual epidemics of dysglycemia infertility autism diseased hearts and melancholy
Constitutional contractual criminal international tort eminent domain
Not to mention the euphemistically-called family law
Loss of weight faith consortium and the use and enjoyment of real estate
To be properly enjoined removed abated declared a public nuisance and seized if only on behalf of
Bigger losers fair balanced dogma reports vicarious pretend-athletics and other strikingly intellectual property
In these opportunistic times
Despoiled third-world lands heralded as benchmarks of progress
Warming poles and cooling temperate-zone coasts appreciated by anglers
Mass deaths touted as acts of God
Or the next best thing
The ultimate in hubris
Self-congratulatory pseudo-wisdom exported at light speed
From more and more transmitters
Of coldness, fear, nakedness, death
Provoke complaints from
Neither the bacteria feeding on the petroleum crests
Nor the predators snapping up the chilled-out shrimp that ingested the flushed antidepressants
Nor the salt water aficionados skiing the heightening surf
Nor the haughty onlookers glorifying their countries of origin
Nor the musicians endlessly practicing those fugues as no one’s listening
Nor the attorneys milking pay from their hopelessly indoctrinated clients
Nor the executives harboring obvious purchased control of august boards of governmental regulators
Nor the networks, social and otherwise
Nor the conglomerated pharmaceutical enterprises promoting more sales through shorter physician visits
Nor the drugged watchers of news football or more violent or crude hypnosis or is that entertainment
Nor the rising stars engaged, in the name of health & teamwork, in activities repeatedly brutalizing themselves
Nor the parents proud to witness the resulting slow ruination of those young bodies
Nor the complicit the vain the worn out the wasted the in crowd the me-too zoned out masses
Nor the blue whippoorwill grounded by the crawling of time
Nor the typically fat forties frustrated female gallstone sufferers
Who apparently prefer comfort food over real comfort or real food
Nor the machines and those who love them
Why should I
Having been so separate so alone so into myself for so long
Be so provoked
As to give the human condition further thought?

We puppy each other
By nature, without thinking
A wolf couple in our past lives
A beautiful introduction to Earth
For me after having been a self-repairing sentient machine
One lifetime of millions of Earth years on a faraway world in Virgo
Such a long patient existence
That when a red giant arranged its predictable end
I couldn’t immediately adapt to the insanity of humanity
Particularly of Western European extraction
In the midst of a colorful cultural swan song
In these forlorn times
I had to get to know
The more natural aspects of the place first
Still I like to think I would’ve recognized her instantly
And puppied her regardless
Even had I known the acceptance of my own horsy kind
Yet how do I accept the paradox
Of each walking breathing talking enthralling exercise in futility
Who’s maybe to her a horse only out of her politeness
She says in one of her darker moods
A thinner one’s really more like a colossal ostrich
With a smile
At what could’ve been
Had I been aware of that perspective as a young man
A chance at romance
Of exultant fulfillment for me
Of Harlequin depth for le fille
A mismatch at whose predictable end
We would’ve recognized each other
To reach puppy love after the passion-driven variety
A fitting prospect for anyone born like me
Beneath a retrograde Venus in Virgo.

The white American woman became liberated
Around the time of numerous worldwide contemporaries
But compared to them hasn’t she more often chosen
Work over family
Use over compassion
Inanity over thoughtfulness
Treacherous exploits over acts of grace
Indirectness over clarity
Manipulation over cooperation
Denial of perceived drudgery over bestowal of heartfelt charity
Sophistication over simplicity
A penny borrowed over a penny socked away
A sardonic dollop of creamy spite over tasty vitriol-coated nuggets of cynicism
Too good
In these scurrilous times
Deriding the creative the intellectual the unusual the shamed the nonsexual the nerds
Leaving her most artistic kinsmen
Rejected
I wonder if she accepts anyone
At least the guys who used to hang out drinking after school must’ve make the cut
Or maybe not
Since I met one of them years afterward
In a sports bar jammed with lonely souls
As I held a beverage smelling like bilge
On behalf of a colleague who’d dragged me in there and needed a restroom break
He recognized me instantly
Though high school and that whole befuddled town so far behind us
Bade him say:
“Who’da thought I’d see you here with a beer in your hand
  You’re all right after all”
How could I disappoint him by responding
With disagreement, thanks, commiseration
With anything true or meaningful whatsoever
With more than just the quiet look
A horse or wolf or robot would’ve given in reply to such an inscrutable remark?

Does she pity the horsy women
Or scorn them
While she finds them typically nice enough people
Whether languid and affected, or plucky and all business
She yet finds most arrogant, indolent to such a point that
In these snobbish snubbing times
If any of them saw a capable man on the road would they jump to embrace him
Honk him out of the way
Or once he reveals himself to be just who he is
Leave the tango
The better to shoot him down
She rhetorically asks
How their cool disregard for what would outrage any others
Were so many of their kinsmen in the arms of foreigners
Asians Russians Indonesians African Americans African Africans could be
Too good
Even acceptable
To render the future unacceptable
Unless by the time it comes nobody will think
As though there’s no way it can be
Too good
How could they fail she wonders
To instantly recognize the end this spells for their own kind
To react with heartfelt emotion
On any road or anywhere
Too good
To realize each child
Of an Asian mother will gravitate toward Asians
Is a boy not drawn to the body type of the woman he’s known best
Is a girl not likely to provide care to she who attentively raised her
And who’ll help her choose a husband, being a thoughtful guide
Unlike the horsy women she says
Leave their men to the care of the rest of the world
Graciously distribute all genes
Too good
Other than maybe those of couch potato barfly urban cowpunks who think you’re cool
So long as you’re holding a cup of bilge
Are the classic Western European brew the homemade ale the sudsy lager
Too good
For you to reject
The karma on behalf of your genocidal spemicidal suicidal
Pretentious race
Which is it
Whatever we deserve
Whatever we expect
Or whatever goes around?

For my part I long for my old faraway world
Where I lived almost forever
Or this world might do
Once the wild places are returned
From these withdrawn times
To the dominion of wolves and wild horses
Too bad
Some machines strike me as emotionally deeper than some humans
And perhaps wiser
Though humans might surprise me yet
Assuming they survive since
There’s no time
To consider that possibility
As she interrupts these thoughts to protest:
“I’m beautiful dammit”
“You didn’t stick to your tribe
  But instead came to a part of the world where horses have rein
  Where rejects like me go for the middle ground
  Where someone not too spoiled might find me not too repugnant
  Where any cute little childlike loving cheburashka not out of shape or off her rocker
  Is far better than a cold ruthless manipulative condescending horse
  Which might as well be no one at all”
“I’m awesome where I come from you lucky bastard”
“I never said you weren’t
  But how would I have taken you for a beauty queen
  Given the electronic media and magazines I had growing up?”
“Your programmed reactions to your horsy women are bad for my hormones”
“Loneliness was bad for my spirit
  And you’d know nothing about how attractive I find horsy women to be
  If I’d been smart enough to keep my mouth shut
  For more than just over a decade and a half”
“Opposites attract don’t they?”
“What about birds of a feather
  When this bird lived its first six years in a rural setting
  Then moved to a monocultural town
  Or more like trinitarian cultural Godhead
  Where money and labor are as opposite as things get
  And my first glimpse of a black man there made me point and shout ‘what’s that?’
  Since I honestly thought I was seeing an escaped zoo creature”
“You’re the problem solver
  So fix yourself
  To see what real beauty is”
Yet she knows it’s true our body types are different
Her dainty type B blood versus my type O that walks unnoticingly through walls
Her rounded broad-shouldered adrenal dominance versus my slim thyroidal persuasion
Her high Jewish-Gypsy cheekbones versus my long Hun face
And it was after all her mom who told her I looked rather nice
Before she looked again and sort of agreed
“Instinct works both ways”
“We both come with our perks”
“Sure
  I can reach stuff off the top shelf for you without a stool
  Or move the biggest most awkward potted plants by myself
  Let’s see your tribe try to match that”
“I’ve gotta admit horses can be handy
  But the biggest people aren’t the handiest.”

Is it I who am
To be labeled
As always by those in the know
Naming disordered
With social phobia inhibition avoidant personality borderline aspie spectrum depressed melancholic or phlegmatic
What’s more brusquely put nerd weirdo homo perv wacko four-eyed geek
Or the world
Whether in institutional Greek/Latin or street Celtic
Naming its own ills
At the point of a finger
Preferring to not notice the three pointing back
Failing to understand
The difference
Is there any but awareness
Is it anything but style
Is anyone to blame
In these complacent times
For the easy money and cheap colorful junk swaying
All minds
Sponsored by purveyors of makeup skin cream perfume hairspray
Amid tales of backstabbing lust spite manipulation
Or stale laughter at the expense of someone labeled putz dweeb fag
Soaps and sitcoms by which too many horses are religiously subverted
From early age
The programming
Inspiring celebration of the basest of feminine attributes
Instilling meanness or at best an allegedly worldly-wise conceit
Inculcating fear to show love
Teaching instead clever gamesmanship gimmicky showmanship failed relationship
Never true womanship
All for the sake of selling more so-called beauty
Products
The scatter of the unloving and unloved a corporate side effect
That thankfully didn’t yet pervade all the world
So a few of us lucky bastards can still be puppied
By those from which shores?
And at what price paid
For dispassion
For the unprofessionalism of the tears that might have saved many a dying romance
For appearance without reality
For wondrous insincerity
For attraction to the void the distant the dead
For looks desirable only on the surface
That hides angst loneliness agony
Just beneath
The thin smiles of the overweight women at the beach
So lovely as to ask her with razor tongues what she’s possibly doing
With an awkward large-framed fine-featured geek who’s no good at volleyball:
“God, what country did you come from, dear?”
And what’s the difference if I’m trying
Since I don’t belong
Not with their so sportswomanly crowd
Not on the beach
Not with her
Not with anyone
So beautiful they are
These mares striving for the end of the race?

In a store off Pacific Avenue stand three women
One a fantastic specimen of equinesque pulchritude
Sporting lots of denim and spiked heels and a dashing pink scarf and shades
Obliquely disinterested in all observers
Lengthy face and lengthier limbs
Small satisfied smile notwithstanding
The other two chunkier, rounder, stocky
Not altogether unshapely
Just somebody else’s shape
Speakers of overheard language fortunately understood
Only by me
Since it isn’t in English but means something like:
“What do ya think of her?”
“Flat”
“You mean she wouldn’t pass for a model?”
“Maybe about as nicely as a clothes hanger would”
“What about her own countrymen?” (Like our husbands, she didn’t bother to add)
“Meaning?”
“Would they like her?”
“They’d probably find her cold”
“They’d probably be right”
The object of this conversation has by now made her purchase and left
Oblivious to everyone and everything
Up on those stilettos
That might have punched holes through my heart
Had I followed her
Had I sought the questionable comfort of vainly trying to know her distant passion
Had she chosen to kick
Had I not found another life
In these indifferent times
And maybe that’s the point
All two of them
“Don’t blame me for liking that shape
  There are girls like her on every wall”
“Which reminds me:
  Stalin’s portrait was on every wall.”

After spending the day alone at home
As I return from the office
She fixes me with a perplexed look:
“No wonder the people of this country
  Have so many emotional problems
  All you care about here is money”
“What do you mean?”
“Where’s the joy of helping someone for the love of it
  When everyone works for pay?
  Why are there so many single parents
  While capable men stand streetside begging for handouts?
  Who’s there when you get sick?
  A hospital that requires you to cough up hundreds if not thousands of dollars?
  How does anyone recover from fraud
  When lawyers take over the case
  And run around everyone involved for years
  As judges look aside
  Justifying their existence
  With more motions more hearings more meaningless paperwork
  And so effectively supporting any jerk who long since took the money and ran?
  Does anyone value people at all?
  Does anyone value themselves?
  Look at the long hours and expensive living
  All of which go into nothing permanent
  Only that which is easily lost
  After so much work
  Does none admit that people have worth?
  How frozen cold everybody is here!”
“Many of them would say their primary concern is religion”
“So the people have a spiritual connection at least”
I wash my hands and help her set the table
“Maybe not so much of a spiritual connection”
“But religion is about spirituality”
“In fact, our primary religion here teaches people that they have no value
  Since the only way to have value is through somebody else”
“Through Jesus”
“Right
  Otherwise you’re forever damned”
“It’s the purpose of the church to teach that sort of thing?
  What does it teach you to do
  So you can come to have value through Jesus?”
“To tell the truth, I never could figure out what you have to do exactly
  To be saved
  Or what specific outward difference it’s ever made in anyone’s life
  To do so”
“A guy like you couldn’t figure that out after so many years in the church?”
“Based on that experience
  All I can say is that a religious institution
  Is like any other institution
  And which institution places as much emphasis on teaching anything in particular
  As it does on self-promotion to further itself?”
“In other words collecting money”
“Money’s what everyone needs to survive and thrive”
“Just like I said
  It’s all people care about here”
We sit to eat
She’s prepared yet another wonderful meal
All sorts of fresh mixed steamed veggies
Meat boiled just until it can be cut with a fork
Nothing close to the microwave instant fast-food plasticky dinners that grace tables
In neighboring homes
I suppose
Though people could surprise me yet
In these equivocal times
“You know, you’ve helped me finally understand why there’s such a cozy link
  Between the religious right and the big-moneyed corporate interests”
“How’s that?”
“They share the same goal: to diminish our value as individuals
  They also share the money we dish out to them”
“Don’t they compete over that money?”
“Maybe co-operation works better
  When they can collectively work to convince us that we can’t get by
  Without buying in
  To whatever it is they each have to sell”
“I’m glad to’ve helped you realize that”
“I’ve gotta admit that non-horses bring a fresh perspective”
“We bring you guys the humanity you’ve lost”
“How did we lose it?”
“Well, you didn’t really, you threw it away”
“It wasn’t our fault”
“Who blames you?”
“We blame ourselves
  Particularly if someone from our own country
  For whom we feel warmth and tenderness
  Says ‘Yuck!’ and breaks away in terror
  Or even if it seems that way
  Just because we’ve misunderstood each other
  Which is no surprise
  As many of us as were raised to know cold, calculating machines far better
  Than warm, rascally humans”
“Your spindly horse-women
  Have taken over the roles of men
  And so can no longer be warm in a feminine sense
  Supporting
  Accepting
  Rejoicing as only a woman can in new life rather than new machines
  Nurturing
  They’re each just one of the guys”
“If you’re right
  Why should I be attracted to the masculine American woman?
  Unless I’m homosexual”
“Maybe you are
  I think I know the reason
  I think I knew it with my first taste of the legs of Bush
  It isn’t the genes, which would rather only make women women
  It isn’t the culture here, which tears people away from each other
  Converting the feminists who embrace the culture into mere apologists for it
  It surely isn’t the attitude, which is all surface and no substance
  It must be the abnormal hormones that were added to the food you all had
  Growing up
  That made you a country of giant sickos
  Whose frightened minds are interested only in themselves”
“That makes sense
  Surrogate and mimicked hormones might indeed have
  Turned us cold, or warmed us to that which is life-denying
  Twisted our minds
  Made us both attracted to each other and repelled
  Supportive and grouchy
  Constructive and destructive
  Accepting and rejecting
  All at once”
“That’s why I found such a wholesome guy as you all alone
  And now that you’re mine
  Don’t worry
  You made the right choice
  I’ll find a way to bring you all the warmth you need tonight.”

The funky the nerdy the weird
Should they realize the benefit
To the bottom line
Of tougher credentials longer office hours fewer distractions
Ever count the cost to society
In these unappreciative times
Entire lifetimes
Of thwarted passion bypassed joy endless inhibition woeful inadequacy
Incompleteness beyond the grasp of mathematics science technology
Hold your horses
O cruel business world of ever cheaper shallower thrills
Deep are the wounds you render
The clear of mind
The unique of character
The brave of heart
The noble of soul
The inwardly studly
The outwardly inept
Because as the money talks
Not necessarily out loud
That’s what it innately says
It requires
“If these people are so shallow callous easily led
  Why should you have ever cared
  What they think of you?”
“It’s not my fault I find women of my own style culture and tribe
  Attractive
  I have a provincial backwoods Pennsylvania libido in spite of myself
  Since when could you take the country out of the boy?”
“If you’re so drawn to these women
  Maybe they have more in common with you
  Than just libido
  Which is but a guide
  Maybe they’re no more stupid or shallow than you
  Just programmed to feel inadequate and out of place
  Like you
  So you all get from each other
  What you expect”

Over the years prior to these conversations
The thought had never occurred
That my lifelong voyeurism might be unfair to her
And my reactions to her as to someone hardly womanly
Harmful to her emotional and physical health
So I try to look upon these women
Not just taking them in with the usual lust fraught with dread
But more as she’s suggested
Breaking things down
Where’s the magic in
A certain skin tone
Certain cheeks and facial features
Height and narrow shape
Certain hair
A certain manner of speech
That small satisfied smile
It’s no good
Where I’m stuck is the pelvis
With those lengthy thighs coming in far enough apart
That they don’t meet swishing directly beneath as they walk
So that prominent pubic thrust has nothing to stand in the way
Of seeing it all the way through from straight ahead and behind
While those delicate hip ridges balance above
Just enough curves
But not too many
Secondly the marvelously slim waist
On any healthy exemplar of the style
Last but not least
The scent
That natural heady scent
I’ve so rarely come close enough
Particularly in the absence of commercial additives
In these otherwise jaded times
To blissfully inhale
“How could anyone be hung up on a pelvis
  And such a plain-jane one, too?”
“What do you mean —
  In various more or less wispy garb
  That pelvis has sold
  More auto parts
  More portable electronic keyboards
  More diet drinks party favors cruises feminine hygiene products season passes cologne
  More cheap plastic gadgets
  More libido-enhancing substances
  Than any other in the world
  Probably more than all the others put together”
“Hilarious
  I mean the whole idea that there’s freedom in this country is just laughable
  When one specific pelvis has been so overused
  That any variety’s wasted on you guys”
“That’s why there’s so much talk of freedom
  And of variety
  Those who have have
  Those who pretend talk”
“How limited you all are here”
“Maybe it’s just the tribal call
  These are the home people
  Men everywhere could just be wired for desire
  For what looks feels smells
  Like home”
“Trust me
  It’s a never-ending sales pitch
  That’s done this to you
  By overselling you all that tackiness throughout your life
  As a horrible side-effect
  Your women both oversold themselves
  And over-associated themselves with objects
  Otherwise why their ridiculous talk of being treated as objects
  Never did I hear such stupidity until I came here
  To find this shape sold to the point of making objects of them all
  Objects to be bought used neglected trashed
  Left in the landfill gutter wayside polluting the environment
  In both their minds and yours
  Though there’s sure nothing special about horses
  Windmill bodies propelling themselves amusingly
  On heels that transform already long legs to stilts
  Oh, they’re nice people overall
  Though most can’t hope for even the mediocre shape
  Of their televised counterparts
  So either become bulemic in a loser’s attempt to keep looking supposedly good
  Or let themselves go into obesity
  Though almost none abides self-respect
  Nor have you who’ve been dragged down with them
  That’s why you found yourself detached
  Utterly on your own
  Why you knew
  A heart so long bound in despair desperation confusion
  A prostate so long swollen from thwarted sexual release to the point of repeated infection
  A soul so long abandoned
  Before I came along
  Before you had a real woman
  Before you had a real home
  Here with me
  So crave me”
“What can I do about liking what I like
  When we can’t even know whether I’ve been conditioned by nature or by advertising or by ingested hormones
  Or by sheer experience
  Of the shape of the pelvis through which I entered this world
  A wild ride into the moment which in astrological understanding formed much of my character for this lifetime
  A ride that part of a man’s body relives each time he lays with a woman
  A ride that he’s called to reenact
  If he can
  In the interest of continuing the line
  Even if the race is self-destructive
  I couldn’t think of a better way for it to end itself
  Than to ensure that ride’s the last
  And all others lead to mongrels
  The geek genes are clever
  They’ll survive through imported mates
  Imbued with hybrid vigor
  But this generation of thoroughbred geeks will themselves leave scant few observers to fully appreciate
  Their story’s end”
“Whatever you say about the race
  This is about the two of us
  And how you feel about me
  Remember
  The crucial stage of healing is the simple recognition that there’s something to be healed”
“But because the impulse I have is instant
  Before thought
  Trying to think differently of horsy women won’t change it
  Maybe this healing at least partly involves your challenge to accept me the way I am
  The way they didn’t
  Ironic as it may be that I prefer their warm bodies
  Since so cold are their spirits
  That I geekily failed to realize women prefer that their men prefer their bodies
  Over other styles”
“Cold bodies indeed
  Frigid
  If they never welcomed yours
  As the evidence shows
  Or even if they might have
  Cold minds
  If not crazy or outrageous
  If they succeeded
  In making you feel forever unwelcomed
  Too bad
  Since I found you
  Long abandoned
  Aching
  A boundless stretch
  From so many fellows back in my country
  So unlike them you are
  Not wasting away from alcoholism
  Instead taking a sincere interest in me
  A good listener
  Active about our health issues
  Protective affectionate understanding even passionate
  Regardless of my shape”
“After all why should some nonsensical body preference
  Decide who I should be with
  Or whether you should feel disappointed”
“If you really prefer a different style you’re uniquely flexible to not have followed that call”
“Desperation is the mother of flexibility”
“How could I be disappointed that you’re that unique
  That flexible
  Handy capable creative responsible thoughtful resourceful
  Great in the kitchen or doing the domestic chores or working outdoors
  And a steady breadwinner too
  Who could’ve called you a faggot
  Who could be more manly
  Why should your voyeurism or your amusing musings about life with a horse or geekdom’s demise bother me
  When all poets are voyeurs with each their own bevies of muses
  When that’s what I signed up for
  You’re what I took on
  When I came to your nutty country”
“It must seem that much nuttier to you now”
“No kidding
  But I finally know how and why I was called here
  You did the calling
  And I came in response
  I’ve been honored to be handed this role
  To give you this healing
  Not to pity or scorn the horsy women I’ve found here
  Who to this day accept their sad circumstances
  Whatever lonely existences or deadbeat dudes they got
  They more than willingly handed quite a stallion over to me
  According to my interpretation of all the relevant events of your history
  That you’ve described
  Or is that a puppy they left me to take by the scruff
  To raise
  To realize we’re both beautiful
  Because you’re mine
  But one way can I feel toward them
  Thankful”
“I’m thankful that you’re taking my little admission so well”
“I see you as a really attractive man”
“You’re the only woman to have said so
  These three decades since I first assumed none would”
“Well, it’s true
  And I just want you to see me as beautiful, too”
Wouldn’t that be wonderful
Too good
To be true?

Summers in these hills have cooled with the changing climate
While the horses grazing this dry land have proven too difficult to keep
In these crepuscular times
The nearest ones struck on steepness by Aussies were there a few years
Grew emaciated
Incited choler
Involving the county’s animal services department
And were eventually gone
The next nearest three broke free from their enclosure
Wandered the dusty ridge a few months
Until two disappeared leaving the lone third to sob disconsolately
As we pass, which is rarely now
Since the owner having been relieved of the others
Found he could stand there all day firing his shotgun into the wind
His prized weapon
Useful or useless in his hand as a cup of bilge
Spooking his last lone horse
Until she broke from her enclosure in terror
Ran for her life down the gravel road
Down and down the unfamiliar incline as the shots rang across the sky behind
Down past my nearest neighbor’s home barely turning in time to miss the fence
Further down until she recognized the precipitous drop at the road’s end
Just in time
To backpedal frantically on the dust and stones
Just as my neighbor’s heart stopped beating a few seconds
At the extraordinary sight of her nude horsy body
Grinding to a halt
Inches from the edge
Leaving her emptied of fright, now, lugubrious
Just as her mind’s left empty of reasons
For surviving a bit longer in isolated triumph
The last of her shape and form on all this proud trigger-happy land
Pointless as further denial
Wistful as may be the recognition
The capable of the future shall no more be such twitchy persnickety purebreds
But the mutts known to be stronger and more adaptable
Conceived via a eugenics of desperation
Selection by homeland undesirability
Reproductive choice by international corporate design
Or merely designation of nerd
Who knows
By the time the results at last become obvious
What the land’s already free to grow

Thanks always returns

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