Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Bill Tremblay's "Brief Encounter"

    In response to my cat poem "here and now" - here -  Bill sent me this poem.  It is from a book called WALKS ALONG THE DITCH which will be published, spring, 2016.


I step westward along the ditch
on snowshoes. Winged clouds stand 
pearl white above the foothills.
 A year ago they blazed orange.
Fire swirled like Chinese dragons
from lodge pole pine to ponderosa. 
Forest rangers say it's the hot 
summers, the pine-bark beetles that

burrow into the trees and kill them.
 The sky shifts from blue to chartreuse.
Silence. A breeze in flocked box elders
brings flakes down on a moving
 hump of crystal, a frosted apparition 
of fur. We look at one another
a moment, then turn south where the ditch
plays out into stubbled corn fields.
Ahead I see her black nose sticking out
from a juniper. She must’ve crossed ice,
 run behind, past me, a ghost, calm
with sharing my space, my interest in
her face. Then she vanishes. 
A chill ripples in my gloved hands 
as she writes herself there 
where I hold her after-image
like a part of myself I hardly ever see.

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