I take a deep breath,

and give her some space.

I see a small flinch,

I’m too close to her face.

Deftly dance back,

give her some room

I’ll ask her quite gently if

it’s okay to groom

her gorgeous brown bottom,

taut as a breeze,

just waiting to blow.



She’s out on the grass.

My gelding has returned

to the turnout and now

I return to fetch her.

No reluctance.

She greets me and places

her face in the halter.

Polite yields polite.

Sometimes I wish

that I were her



It’s too early in the season for the pumpkin

to come off the vine–

off the vein–

off the pulse of life,

but it had to happen.

Straight down and round,

heels balancing, orange-whisped tail


Pumpkin butt.

Cali had been loaded one last time into

the horse trailer so it would be easier

to haul her to the dump.

They would dig a hole,

and bury her.

I cut through the Dreamsicle-colored and stilled swish,

a tail souvenir,

but only after helping to ease her onto her side.

She offered no resistance.

The vet wrapped the strands of hair

together with white medical tape.

A coda.


another sweetly glowing sunset

will melt.

We sweat and yearn for rain.


Grooming gloves on.
Respirator on, too.
I should always wear it
when I mix feed or groom,
but I don’t.
Today is different.
To hide my embarrassment
I conceal the respirator
beneath a pink
zebra-striped bandanna.
Am I embarrassed to value myself?
It’s not that.
I’m afraid of the ridicule.
I’m afraid of being called a chicken.
It still scares me.
There is acceptance, too,
even respect
for my choices.
I know no one really means anything by it
and that when push comes to shove
we have each other’s backs.
Vertical and horizontal
Red hair
clumps and strands
float, blow, spin.
My breath wheezes
strangely, behind the mask.
I get a little side eye,
momentary incredulity,
then we are fine.
I’m impervious.
I’m wearing my respirator.

August Brain Melt, Alas

Sweet Al grazing

Horses on the grass alas.
Horses on the grass alas.
Short longer grass short longer longer shorter green grass. Horses
large horses on the shorter longer green grass alas horses on the
If they were not horses what were they.
If they were not horses on the grass alas what were they. He had
heard of a third and he asked about it it was a Pegasus in the sky.
If a Pegasus in the sky on the sky can not cry if the horse on the
grass alas can alas and to pass the horse on the grass alas and the
Pegasus in the sky on the sky and to try and to try alas on the
grass alas the horse on the grass the horse on the grass and alas.
They might be very well they might be very well very well they might
Let Rocky Sweet Al Sweet Al Rocky Rocky let Rocky Rocky Sweet Al Sweet Al Sweet Al Sweet Al
Sweet Al let Sweet Al Rocky Rocky let Sweet Al. Let Rocky Sweet Al.

After Gertrude Stein https://allpoetry.com/From-Four-Saints-in-Three-Acts

Rocky grazing

Equus asinus

(Indulge my ass, please. Thank you.)

My curious fat ass


for more cookies.

My curious fat ass

rolls along.

My curious fat ass

says, “Hey! Looky, looky!

How could one more nibble

be wrong?”

My curious fat ass

supports me.

My curious fat ass

always cares.

My curious fat ass

is the foundation

that holds me up in this chair.

Feet on the floor!

Give it some ground!

Keep that connection

to this world that is round.

Curves and a jiggle,

provocative cleft!

My curious fat ass

has plenty of heft!

Weigh your words and your worth

with more than a scale

Honor your ass.

Wag your own…..


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