Traveling through the dark I found a deer
dead on the edge of the Wilson River road.
It is usually best to roll them into the canyon:
that road is narrow; to swerve might make more dead.
By glow of the tail-light I stumbled back of the car
and stood by the heap, a doe, a recent killing;
she had stiffened already, almost cold.
I dragged her off; she was large in the belly.
My fingers touching her side brought me the reason—
her side was warm; her fawn lay there waiting,
alive, still, never to be born.
Beside that mountain road I hesitated.
The car aimed ahead its lowered parking lights;
under the hood purred the steady engine.
I stood in the glare of the warm exhaust turning red;
around our group I could hear the wilderness listen.
I thought hard for us all—my only swerving—,
then pushed her over the edge into the river.
sometimes, in the depths of night, i think about the process of falling asleep, and how hard it is for me.
sometimes i wish i could just wake up the next morning, bypassing the process, not knowing how i came to be there, and how long it took me to drift away.
into the night.
[draft one][prelude companion to Black Sun, Red Sky that i wrote and am in the process of revising]
What The Black Dunes Told Me
We weren’t always like this. At one point, we were kids—maybe fourteen, or fifteen—and we did whatever we damn well pleased. This included staying out all night, riding our bikes into and past the curfews our parents set; lighting an ant colony on fire with matches we stole from the Kowalski’s off of Old Hudson; bashing in any mailbox that had the little red flag raised. At the time, I think that we saw it as our job to destroy anything and everything around us, in whatever way we saw fit.
So here I sit, thinking: “we weren’t always like this.” Once, we were in constant motion; free. So free, in fact, that we didn’t have the time to think about consequences, what our folks and teachers would say, or even what our actions would do to us as young boys. In the daytime, I would lace up my Adidas’ and hop on my BMX to my best friend Terrence’s house.