And suddenly, you were home again.
And below and all around you, lightning
whipped the wind-scoured prairie.
And the sky turned violet, and then black,
dusted with ribbons of galaxies.
And in the paddock at the end of the road,
four white horses grazed.
And when you walked in their direction,
you always stuffed carrots in your pockets.
And once, one of the horses had a snout
full of porcupine quills.
And when summer came, folks sat out
in their back yards until late.
And their kids, energized by by the cool air,
made up games with complicated,
And chiggers chewed your legs, leaving trails
of hellish itching, until you were almost afraid
of what you couldn’t see.
And in mid-summer, the rodeo, and hot dogs,
and red-white-and-blue, and motorcycles,
and dust mixed with sweat mixed with dust.
And then the aspens turned a brilliant yellow.
And you imagined that sitting among them
was like being inside the sun.
And then the snow came, always measured
not in inches, but in feet.
And the cold was so dry, you could barely
feel it until it was too late.
And once, when you shoveled the driveway,
your face froze, but you didn’t know.
And when you couldn’t move your mouth
to answer a neighbor’s question, he sent you
indoors to thaw out.
And then, one day, you packed your things
in your car, and drove away.
And maybe you forgot to tell the hills
and the prairie, because they didn’t know.
And even now, they are waiting for you
to come home again.
(c) 2018, by Hannah Six
Image: Spearfish Falls, Spearfish Canyon,