Journal of Writing & Environment

The horse in the pasture

watches the bull from the edge

of its round, black eye.


Like a thought making itself whole

the bull’s gray and black body knocks

and knocks against the gate—


if he came through

would it not be like

the mind unfastening?


The horse’s skin, a burnt red

like certain slices of shale

towering above the canyon,


quivers as the muscles pulse beneath.

My mind has been a bull testing itself

against the body’s gate.


In panic, my heart

bucked in its white cage, swinging

everything nearly coming open.